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August (2008)

tomatometer

35

Average Rating: 4.7/10
Reviews Counted: 26
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 17

Josh Hartnett puts in a well-intentioned performance but overall, August only superficially explores its dotcom-burst setting.

25

Average Rating: 4.1/10
Critic Reviews: 12
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 9

Josh Hartnett puts in a well-intentioned performance but overall, August only superficially explores its dotcom-burst setting.

audience

22

liked it
Average Rating: 2.6/5
User Ratings: 2,997

My Rating

Movie Info

Josh Hartnett, Naomie Harris, Rip Torn, and Adam Scott star in director/co-screenwriter Austin Chick's tale about an ambitious dotcom entrepreneur attempting to stay afloat as the stock market begins to collapse and the entire country remains blissfully unaware of the national tragedy looming ever closer on the horizon. Tom Sterling (Hartnett) is on a professional downward spiral that's rapidly cutting into his personal life as well. His apathetic investor, Ogilvie (David Bowie), is refusing to

R,

Drama

Howard A. Rodman

Aug 26, 2008

Original Media

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All Critics (27) | Top Critics (12) | Fresh (9) | Rotten (17) | DVD (5)

Anyone who thinks that Josh Hartnett isn't a true movie star should see his riveting, high-wire performance in August, a shrewdly dramatized look back at the bursting of the dot-com bubble.

July 16, 2008 Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Smartly scripted, convincingly atmospheric morality fable in which Hartnett, usually insubstantial as a good guy, plays a convincingly flawed character galloping toward the precipice.

July 14, 2008 Full Review Source: Newsday
Newsday
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Only an amusing cameo by David Bowie enlivens things, but he's onscreen for just about two minutes at the end.

July 11, 2008 Full Review Source: New York Post
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's not much to it, but Austin Chick's hyper-focused indie does serve as a nicely assured showcase for lead Josh Hartnett.

July 11, 2008 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Has a dark desperation thatā(TM)s morbidly compelling. But the movieā(TM)s amoral momentum is fatally slowed by an acronym-heavy script and flimsy characterizations that offer fine actors...little to play.

July 11, 2008
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

August is a brooding, boring indie drama about the death of the culture-wide hallucination that was the dot-com bubble, and the moment when countless dot-com millionaires on paper became real-life paupers.

July 10, 2008 Full Review Source: AV Club
AV Club
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This one has nothing extraordinary about it to compensate for seven years' staleness.

December 1, 2008 Full Review Source: Screen International
Screen International

A movie that makes a good initial public offering.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Entertainment Insiders
Entertainment Insiders

If you want to see ignorant self destruction, see Troy Duffy in "Overnight" and forget this film---the worst mistake Josh Hartnett has made in his career.

July 27, 2008 Full Review Source: Monsters and Critics
Monsters and Critics

While this modest indie offers high-tension plotting, it's real substance is the contrast between Hartnett's charismatic, hard-charging business persona and his intimacy-challenged real-life relationships.

July 16, 2008 Full Review Source: Star Magazine
Star Magazine

...the picture ... provides Josh Hartnett with one of his most interesting roles, and it elicits one of his sharpest performances.

July 14, 2008 Full Review Source: MTV

This stylish, well acted drama chronicles one once-successful dot-com's efforts to stay afloat in the wake of the Internet boom's bust.

July 11, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

all gloss and pizzazz but mostly pizz and no azz.

July 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

Merely serves to watch a company's ashes fall without really considering what started the fire.

July 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Metromix.com
Metromix.com

Rodman's potentially intriguing idea about the 2001 crash of the dot-com biz just months before 9/11 is poorly executed by helmer Chick (XX/XY), who doesn't take full advantage of his star cast, headed by Josh Hartnett, Naomie Harris and David Bowie.

July 7, 2008 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

A procession of anger mismanagement protagonist episodes of rude behavior with assorted unbelievably receptive babes, and a glutton-for-punishment old flame (Naomie Harris) whom he manages to re-con into bed, before she wises up all over again.

July 7, 2008 Full Review Source: NewsBlaze
NewsBlaze

Hartnett does windbag cockiness well, yet the overriding conception of his character and the Dot Com phenom in general is so straightforward and unrevealing that his effort goes for naught.

July 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

Audience Reviews for August

[font=Century Gothic]"August" is a flat and cliche-ridden movie about brothers Tom(Josh Hartnett) and Josh(Adam Scott) Sterling who have started an internet company called Landshark that is a huge success, making them the toast of the town. Thankfully, it has less to do with Jimmy Buffett than with Buddhism which is still kind of odd. Josh is the designer and Tom is the public face of the company, seeking to validate himself in the eyes of their professor father(Rip Torn) while living a lavish lifestyle. Josh is much more prudent by living in a modest apartment, apparently saving money for his child's college fund. Tom also wants to continue the revolution his father started. Or so he says.[/font]
[font=Century Gothic][/font]
[font=Century Gothic]By August 2001, that is no longer an option as the dot com bubble has burst, sending the stock price plummeting. Tom is the last person to realize how much trouble Landshark is in as his employees have stopped working with little to do.(However, they are still too busy to send out resumes.) Since there is nothing left but the funeral, there is little of interest except watching Tom attempt to save his company as the vultures close in. One bright spot for him is reconnecting with his old flame Sarrah(Naomie Harris) who has been living in Spain. Landshark may be without hope but the movie might have had a chance with a decent performance in the lead but Josh Hartnett lacks the magnetism and talent to play such a charismatic heel.[/font]
May 22, 2009
Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Josh Hartnett's performance in this film, is a good reason to check out the movie. In my opinion, it is one of his best performances, so far. The film reminded me of films like The Prime Gig, Boiler Room, Less Than Zero, Nothing in Common, Up in the Air, American Psycho, and Glen Gary Glen Ross. Adam Scott is also very good, as Hartnett's brother. Scott and Hartnett have a good on screen chemistry. Robin Tunney and Rip Torn are solid in their roles. David Bowie steals the one scene that he is in. The music in the film is good. On a negative, the pacing is off. Also while Naomie Harris was ok in her role, I think another actress in that role, would have done a much better job. She didn't have a good on screen chemistry with Hartnett. Still the film is worth watching for the performances, especially Hartnett's.
February 28, 2010
SC007
Sol C

Super Reviewer

The film mainly centers on the charismatic and arrogant character Tom Sterling [portrayed by Hartnett] trying to keep the Dotcom company he started with his genius brother afloat as it begins to fold, spending money frivolously to make it seem as though the company is doing well...all while trying to rekindle a romance with his ex-girlfriend Sarrah [portrayed by the beautiful Naomie Harris]. Great performance by Josh Hartnett - he was brilliant in this film, he delivered quite possibly his best performance and pretty much carried this film. Good supporting performances by Adam Scott ["Step Brothers","Party Down"], Andre Royo ["The Wire"], Robin Tunney ["Prison Break","The Craft"], Rip Torn ["Men In Black"], Emmanuelle Chriqui ["Entourage"], David Bowie [who was only in one scene--which he stole], and Naomie Harris ["Ninja Assassin","The Tomorrow People"].

Great cinematography, directing [by Austin Chick], and good writing. It reminded me of "Boiler Room" at times, mainly because of some of the dialogue and the fact that they never really explained what the company actually did...only that it had to do with the net. Overall this film is an interesting character study, but it kind of drags and it's mainly the stellar performances that keep it going and almost make up for it not being that compelling.
June 9, 2010
Chosen718

Super Reviewer

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