In 1970, the X-rated Midnight Cowboy was nominated for seven awards and walked away with Best Picture. Starring Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman, the movie tells the story of a naive Texas drifter's partnership with a cynical New York man of the streets. In the bleak, smutty world of 1960s Times Square, Ratso Rizzo shows Joe Buck how to make his way in a city that doesn't care a cent about him.
The film received an X rating due to its unabashed portrayal of prostitution and homosexuality. At the time, however, its X rating wasn’t as shocking as an NC-17 is today. The X rating was introduced in 1968 to indicate it wasn’t appropriate for children, not necessarily that it was full of sex.
Since 1974, Midnight Cowboy has been downgraded to R.