Clint Eastwood’s biopic of FBI chief J Edgar Hoover is under-lit and over-reverential. And Watts, too, proves why she's one of the best actresses around. Directed by Clint Eastwood. One scene involves a surveillance audiotape that seems to have recorded the sounds of people having sex. MOVIE REVIEW: J.EDGAR. The audience for the film might be the kinds of people who went to see “ Frost/Nixon ” a few years ago—perhaps middle-aged men with a passion to learn more about what motivated historical figures like Hoover. And there's an infuriating final twist that sneakily preserves the movie's impartiality. This much, though, isn't up for debate: DiCaprio's masterful performance. Some social drinking, though Hoover was a teetotaler and actively discouraged people from drinking, on and off the job. Edgar” is a serious movie designed to win some Oscars, rather than filling multiplexes full of entertainment-hungry masses. Leonardo DiCaprio plays the chief, both as a young zealot in the cause of criminal-detection science, and as a crinkly oldster behind his desk, frowning, grimacing, taking his glasses on and off, barking cantankerous orders to his devoted secretary, and occasionally making brooding appearances on his Washington DC office balcony, to watch another presidential inaugural motorcade roll past. What does the movie say about the motivations of people in a position of power? J. Edgar movie reviews & Metacritic score: J. Edgar explores the public and private life of one of the most powerful, controversial and enigmatic figures of the 20th century. Working from a screenplay by Dustin Lance Black, Clint Eastwood directs this ponderous biopic of the legendary J Edgar Hoover, autocratically in charge of the FBI from 1935 until his death in 1972. He's matched by Hammer, who demonstrates again that he's an actor who understands nuance and delivers it. J. Edgar is moving and informative, but more often, it seems trapped between wanting to illuminate and wanting to be discreet. Searching for streaming and purchasing options ... Common Sense is a nonprofit organization. By Leigh Paatsch If you chose to provide an email address, it will only be used to contact you about your comment. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reports an approval rating of 43% based on 243 reviews, with an average rating of 5.72/10. Check out J.Edgar (2012) movie review, rating & box Office. founder J. Edgar Hoover’s life and career that views him … Let me ask you something, did you enjoy reading History books on J. Edgar Hoover? DiCaprio is most convincing when he shows J Edgar as a young man, with an almost obsessive interest in library systems of classification, his dark eyes lighting up with excitement at the thought of applying these systems to putting the entire population under surveillance. I'm not sure quite how solid it is. Find the over all response of J.Edgar film! Common Sense is the nation's leading nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of all kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in the 21st century. DiCaprio's Hoover is an interesting and considered performance, and he and Eastwood plausibly put us inside Hoover's home life. He is one brave actor. What to Watch, Read, and Play While Your Kids Are Stuck Indoors, Common Sense Selections for family entertainment, Check out new Common Sense Selections for games, Teachers: Find the best edtech tools for your classroom with in-depth expert reviews, Cómo hablar con los niños sobre la violencia en el Capitolio de los Estados Unidos, Actividades de bienestar para el invierno, Which Side of History? Directed by Clint Eastwood. Movie Review: “J. © Common Sense Media. J Edgar has a typical Clint Eastwood theme – a man with his overbearing sense of self – and his political/psychological conflicts. Recently, Hari Kunzru wrote about the approved products of culture that "taste of cardboard". Do you think his memories are accurate? Title: J. Edgar Director: Clint Eastwood Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer ('The Social Network'), Naomi Watts and Judi Dench Preserving your It is by no means fact that Hoover and Tolson were lovers. “MLK/FBI,” directed by Sam Pollard, exposes FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover’s attempts to discredit and humiliate the Rev. The undefined nature of Hoover's relationship with his assistant makes the question of sex, and sexual identity, an important part of the film. The website's critical consensus reads, "Leonardo DiCaprio gives a predictably powerhouse performance, but J. Edgar stumbles in all other departments: cheesy makeup, poor lighting, confusing narrative, and humdrum storytelling." J. Edgar, Clint Eastwood’s biopic of the legendary FBI chief, is a movie about secrets, the burden they place on their keepers, and the … November 16, 2011 @ 1:15 pm greetbeet. Clint Eastwood's biopic of J Edgar Hoover never gets to grips with the FBI founder's sexuality, or his impact on American life, Confused … Leonardo DiCaprio as J Edgar Hoover. The movie went on for 2 and a half hours, and left me bored to tears. Hoover's mother, played frighteningly, winningly close to the bone by grande dame Judi Dench, is so horrific that you have to wonder whether J. Edgar is laying too much of Hoover's dysfunction at her feet. Movie Review | 'J. Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners. Insecure, aggressive, fragile, ambitious, and stunted, Hoover is a very complicated character -- and one who's very difficult to … Parents: Set preferences and get age-appropriate recommendations with Common Sense Media Plus. DiCaprio has an odd habit of neurotically wiping his palms after shaking hands, a mannerism that looks left over from his performance as Howard Hughes. J. Edgar is a curious mix: It's slow, almost glacial, in parts, and then quickly, shockingly moving in others; it's cerebral, almost distant, and then emotionally raw. But DiCaprio leaves nothing on the table; he's all in, and it's a gamble he wins. Families can talk about Hoover's relationship with Tolson. As Hoover, DiCaprio is fascinating and the immensely gripping, well-researched portrayal of this powerful public figure makes J Edgar a must watch. As the face of law enforcement in America for almost 50 years, J. Edgar Hoover was feared and admired, reviled and re..... .View more! On a whole Eastwood stumbled with J Edgar. There is a weird, muffled neutrality to all this, a lot of pulled punches and fudged issues, as if screenwriter and director have made an uneasy alliance to create a Hoover they admire from different angles: the fictional love child of Harvey Milk and Dirty Harry. Synopsis: J. Edgar Hoover, powerful head of the F.B.I. The only reason why it received an R-rating is because they used the word c*cksucker twice. With Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer, Naomi Watts, Josh Hamilton. A figure as divisive and compelling as J. Edgar Hoover demands a movie that provokes some kind of debate other than whether Leonardo DiCaprio will win an Oscar. But in J. Edgar, they're heartbreaking. J. Edgar is a curious mix: It's slow, almost glacial, in parts, and then quickly, shockingly moving in others; it's cerebral, almost distant, and then emotionally raw. The message at the heart of J. Edgar is to be true to yourself, or every part of your life will be based on a false foundation. Another note:... Hoover is portrayed as arrogant and somewhat bullying towards people he doesn't agree with or with whom he does not share common heritage. Yet with his plastic old-guy face on, this Hoover seems to me lacking in form and interest. Wondering if J. Edgar is OK for your kids? Edgar” director Clint Eastwood's sure-handed direction, screenwriter Dustin Lance Black's time-shifting storytelling and the stellar performances from Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer, Judi Dench and Naomi Watts make the J. Edgar Hoover biopic worth watching. The drama happens largely in flashback as Hoover dictates his life story to a succession of submissive junior agents. There is no doubt about how he feels – and yet even here, at the epicentre of this emotional meltdown, Eastwood preserves the glimmer of a possibility that Hoover, though the recipient of homosexual love, is himself merely asexual, confused, with sentimental, brotherly feelings. Get full reviews, ratings, and advice delivered weekly to your inbox. J. Edgar (2011) - J. Edgar Hoover, dyrektor FBI w latach 1924-1972, wspomina swoje życie prywatne i zawodowe. Here is no action man, but an administrator and super-nerd, with a intensely developed sense of professionalism and – something to appal Tea Party activists – an enthusiast for big government and federal empire, sweeping aside the rickety local police departments and putting in place a nationwide outfit of souped-up crimebusters, armed to the teeth. J. Edgar Hoover, powerful head of the F.B.I. J. Edgar (2011) This is a particular kind of movie--the based on fact biopic--done with great attention to period accuracy. Did it deliver? Your purchase helps us remain independent and ad-free. Here is a film that tastes of latex and furniture polish. How Technology Is Reshaping Democracy and Our Lives, Discover activities to get kids excited for a new year of possibilities from Wide Open School, Online Playdates, Game Nights, and Other Ways to Socialize at a Distance, Keeping Kids Motivated for Online Learning, Well-acted biopic is teen-friendly, but dull, Hoover's important, but conflicted, historical position, great teches about the history of j edgar hover, 5 Tips to Make Family Movie Night a Success. This much, though, isn't up for debate: DiCaprio's masterful performance. There are interesting moments and interesting scenes here – but this J Edgar becomes a sonorous, History Channel drone. Well-acted biopic tackles complex character; OK for teens. Do you think the film is asking a question that can never really be answered? It's Leonardo DUH, his movies r always rated R but watevr sooo anyways coming for a 13yr old watching this with my family which has 1 yr olds I would say..... great hsitorical resprisentation brief strong profanity ( C-cksukcer is used twice once by j edgg file"ar hoover and the other by richard nixon f-c... Howard Hughes biopic has mature themes, violence. Expect a few violent fist fights and shoot outs. On vacation with Tolson (they enjoy going to the races together), he nervously confides that he is thinking of getting married to Dorothy Lamour, of all the outrageously obvious beards. A few scenes feature fist fights and shoot outs. Leonardo DiCaprio stars as J. Edgar Hoover, the man who led the FBI for almost 50 years, through eight presidents and three wars. But are these echoes intentional? With superhuman restraint, Black does not put in any gags about how long Hoover has been, ahem, a friend of Ms Lamour. Using the typical left-wing matrix of Hoover’s alleged crimes, the movie opens with the Attorney General appointing Hoover to investigate left-wing immigrant agitators in 1919. Become a member to write your own review. Parents need to know that this Clint Eastwood-directed biopic about longtime FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) is rated R primarily for a couple of brief but notable scenes of strong language (including "f--k"). This film's echoes of Hitchcock's Psycho are striking, almost as if America is turning into a huge Bates motel with peepholes. Thank you for your support. Do you consider Hoover a role model? By Robbie Collin 20 January 2012 • 08:00 am . J.EDGAR– Clint Eastwood’s latest directorial effort–is a mess from every point of view with the exception of Leonardo DiCaprio. Rating: Beg or borrow, but do watch. ... Clint Eastwood directs this ponderous biopic of the legendary J Edgar Hoover, autocratically in charge of the FBI from 1935 until his death in 1972. Suggest an update to this review. But the abiding bond between Hoover and Tolson grounds much of this beautifully filmed history in emotion. Are they always noble? Common Sense and other associated names and logos are trademarks of Common Sense Media, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization (FEIN: 41-2024986). Movie review: “J. J. Edgar focuses on both Hoover's career and his personal life, especially the never-defined relationship with longtime companion Clyde Tolson (Armie Hammer). Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer, Judi Dench and Naomi Watts. “J. Edgar” is a lumbering miscalculation, a slow and clumsy re-think of the late F.B.I. The final scenes are syrupy and faintly bizarre, like a gay Muppet opera about the leave-taking of Statler and Waldorf. Her withering stares wither, indeed, and her pitying glances are painful. See our. J. Edgar: Film Review. Were they friends or more than friends? Your privacy is important to us. Movie Review: J. Edgar THIS curious biopic of J. Edgar Hoover, the founding director of the FBI, comes down with a mild case of the same affliction that blighted The Iron Lady. Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black takes on a mountain of a subject and mostly conquers it; he distills much of it manageably, if not always successfully. Edgar” Posted on December 29, 2012 by rogerinorlando Clint Eastwood’s “J. Fascinating biopic, best for mature teens and up. Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. 15 cert, 136 min . Martin Luther King Jr. through rampant surveillance and wiretapping. The effect of Hoover on America itself is largely ignored, its speculations are cramped, and its actors hampered with plastic, padding and wigs. Movie Reviews TV Reviews Roundtables Podcasts THR Presents. We're updating our reviews to better highlight authentic stories and accurate, diverse representations. The two men, and Gandy, periodically shuffle on for later-life appearances, prosthetically and somewhat exotically aged up. The Lindbergh case takes up a chunk of the storyline -- perhaps too much. I was really, really excited to see this movie, my +1 to the pre-screening and I were talking about all the potential that J. Edgar Hoover presented for a movie. J Edgar, review. As he grows older, Hoover worries about putting on weight, but DiCaprio shows how he is pleased to hear both his mother and his doctor call it "solid weight". He says he wants to "reclarify the difference between villain and hero". Well, so did I, and I … Hoover devoted his life to the bureau, though his personal animosity toward minorities and radicals sometimes led to operations of dubious legality. J. Edgar – review. Our ratings are based on child development best practices. Skittishly overexcited at the job application from handsome young Clyde Tolson, he David Brent-ishly works out in his office, doing pressups. The movie … for nearly 50 years, looks back on his professional and personal life. What is crystal clear is that this Hoover is dominated by his mother, played by Judi Dench, and it is in relation to her that Eastwood and Black effectively acknowledge the scurrilous apocryphal anecdote about Hoover cross-dressing, though in respectfully rewritten form. As the face of … J Edgar - Review. Another note: this movie doesn't deserve an R-rating. Join now. The movie does not quite reclaim Hoover for gay history, neither does it exactly claim a tragic status for Hoover's imprisonment in the closet, nor quite suggest that his tentacular empire was a symptom of sexual repression. Yes? J. Edgar is a workmanlike production that should garner an Oscar nomination for Leonardo DiCaprio, but it's not a great motion picture or even an especially memorable one. If that's what's important, getting a bit of American history into a vivid big screen format, then this works pretty well. Leonardo DiCaprio gave a solid performance, but the rest of this just dull. Infrequent swearing; when the words "c--ksucker" and "f--king" are heard (in two scenes), they stand out since the rest of the film is so lacking in profanity. All rights reserved. Photograph: Keith Bernstein. Young Hoover proposes marriage to the pretty typist Helen Gandy – another uninteresting role for Naomi Watts – and, on being gently rebuffed, appoints her instead his trusted assistant and keeper of the confidential files that were to make him feared throughout Washington. I didn't really find the premise that interesting but had faith in Eastwood and DiCaprio. The truly sensational scene is also somehow one that still preserves the film's distance from Hoover's emotional life. November 16, 2011 @ 12:18 pm Aliminum Badger. Get Live J.Edgar Movie Reviews, Reactions & comments by our users, Movie Jockey and audience. The star rating reflects overall quality. Whether he deserves it or not, De Caprio will get nominated for an Academy Award though. J. Edgar explores the public and private life of one of the most powerful, controversial and enigmatic figures of the 20th century. What a snorefest. Full Review | Original Score: B- Kelly Jane Torrance Washington Examiner Hoover dedicates his life to the FBI and his country; while his devotion is admirable, his tactics are questionable, and it's far from clear that the people and groups he judges as criminal are really deserving of his barely constitutional methods. Naomi Watts co-stars as Hoover's personal secretary, Helen Gandy, who was privy to many of his secrets, especially his personal files that supposedly contained damning secrets about many of the country's most powerful people. There are some foggy reclarification processes at work in this movie, which refrains from simply denouncing Hoover's attitude to civil liberties, balancing this topic with Hoover's dynamic G-Man attacks on gangsters and terrorists, and with his proto-CSI innovations. J. Edgar Movies: As he works on his memoirs at FBI headquarters, an aged J. Edgar Hoover (DiCaprio) explains how he went from fiercely ambitious law … On top of that, Leonardo DiCaprio is excellent, very professional. Was Hoover a reliable narrator? J. Edgar, 2011. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. J Edgar chronicles the public and private life of J Edgar Hoover, the man who founded the FBI and ran it for several decades. The movie suggests that Hoover's inability to be honest about his own identity possibly contributed to an excess of zeal in criminal investigations of sometimes questionable legality. J. Edgar movie reviews & Metacritic score: J. Edgar explores the public and private life of one of the most powerful, controversial and enigmatic figures of the 20th century. But Eastwood and Black put at the centre of this film Hoover's quasi-homosexual, buttoned-up platonic relationship with his Bureau deputy, Clyde Tolson, played by Armie Hammer. Read J. Edgar reviews from parents on Common Sense Media. for nearly fifty years, looks back on his professional and personal life. 'Movie Review: J. Edgar (2011)' have 6 comments. While the movie raises questions about Hoover's sexuality that it doesn't answer, there's no actual sex in it (though one scene features apparent recorded noises of an amorous couple). Clint Eastwood’s new movie J. EDGAR is another left-wing attempt to spit on the grave of FBI founder J. Edgar Hoover. J. EDGAR focuses on both Hoover's career and his personal life, especially his never-defined relationship with colleague/longtime companion Clyde Tolson (Armie Hammer). He also has personal animosity toward minorities and "radicals.". See something that needs to be addressed? The younger, slighter Hoover is more substantial, examining his men like a general making a military inspection, and not hesitating to fire those agents who have loud suits, facial hair and who neglect to call him sir. Insecure, aggressive, fragile, ambitious, and stunted, Hoover is a very complicated character -- and one who's very difficult to pull off. Edgar' Finding the Humanity in the F.B.I.’s Feared Enforcer Leonardo DiCaprio, left, and Armie Hammer in "J. Edgar," directed by Clint Eastwood. We won't share this comment without your permission. As the face of law enforcement in … Some smoking (accurate for the time period). Excellent portrayal of extraordinary musician. The first fifteen minutes of the movie proved my fears to be well founded, since the movie was really boring. Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average rating to reviews, gives the film a normalized scor… Tolson explodes with jealousy, rage and hurt. J. Edgar Movie Review: Critics Rating: 3.5 stars, click to give your rating/review,If you really wanna know how power could actually drive … The movie went on for 2 and a half hours, and left me bored to tears. Also "for God's sake" as an exclamation. Should it be? Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average rating to reviews, Reactions & comments by our users movie... Later-Life appearances, prosthetically and somewhat exotically aged up 's relationship with Tolson exotically aged up movie! Tomatoes reports an approval rating of 43 % based on child development best practices, is n't for! Some smoking ( accurate for the time period ) humiliate the Rev humiliate... Abiding bond between Hoover and Tolson grounds much of this powerful public figure makes J Edgar a must.! Portrayal of this just dull if J. Edgar Hoover ’ s life and career views. 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