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Easy Rider Reviews

Page 1 of 153
blkbomb
blkbomb

Super Reviewer

February 15, 2013
Captain America: No, I mean it, you've got a nice place. It's not every man that can live off the land, you know. You do your own thing in your own time. You should be proud.

"A man went looking for America. And couldn't find it anywhere..."

Easy Rider is the quintessential hippy movie. It does the best job of any film I've ever seen at summing up the hippy state of mind and the hippy experience. The acid trip scene in this film is the best tripping scene ever filmed in my opinion. It's actually the only time I've seen a movie that gets the acid trip right.

Two biker hippies make a big cocaine sale and then leave L.A. for a cross country road trip to New Orleans for Mardi Gras and then to their retirement in Florida. Along the way they pick up a couple of interesting characters, spend a little time in jail, smoke marijuana, and deal with the anti-long haired hippy stereotypes of the south.

The cast is pretty good here with Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and an excellent performance from Jack Nicholson. This is as anti-establishment as movies come and Dennis Hopper's direction is great. This is certainly a movie for those who have a similar view on life as that of the hippie generation. The fact that I'm a modern day hippy(if I get enough sticky) makes this film all the more enjoyable and also all the more infuriating. Terrific movie.
Spencer S

Super Reviewer

August 12, 2010
The story of two rogue men, choppers on the open road with cocaine in their gas tanks, struck a chord with America in the waning sixties, when turmoil from war, poverty, and rioting in the streets caused uproar from the population. Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper play two misfits who are judged by those around them, and their only whim seems to be for the freedom to be who they want and to do what they want. Sure, they do illegal things, indulge a bit too much, but they're wild, they're free. They live on the road, sleep in the brush, and do whatever they want, with malice or love. Surprisingly the story also deals with the prejudice exacted from those in the Deep South who find their hair, their clothes, and their lifestyle, to be against what is right and American. The extent of that hatred runs deep, makes the story all the more amazing, and makes them caged by adversity and disapproval. It's just a very freeing and beautiful film, made all the more interesting by the great performances by Hopper, Fonda, and a supporting role for Jack Nicholson as a lawyer with a twisted sense of humor.
cosmo313
cosmo313

Super Reviewer

June 9, 2006
So much has already been said and written about this film to it's pretty hard to add anything new without inevitably rehashing cliches.

Yes, it is a genuine classic, and one of the best/most important/most influential of all time.

Now, that being said, when looking at this plot-light road movie about two hippie bikers driving motorcycles across the American Southwest in search of America/the American Dream solely as a MOVIE, it's honestly not all that good, and doesn't hold up as well. As a slice of life glimpse into the death of 60s idealism and the counterculture, and as an experience/cultural and historical milestone, then yeah, it's rock solid.

Filled to the brim with groundbreaking aesthetics, style, and one of the most killer soundtracks ever, this truly is mandatory viewing. Oh yeah, and the iconic performances and message don't hurt either.
Apeneck F

Super Reviewer

December 20, 2012
Perfectly vibing the disenchantment of the post-Vietnam, post-civil rights, post-summer of love America (the new noir, with a touch of cowboy thrown in for flavor), Hopper and Fonda ARE the guys your parents warned you about (or said you were gonna be), looking for the big score to-get-away-from-it-all at last. What they find instead is one spaced out country,man, and a bit of film history. The LSD trip segment alone is worth the entire film, and that's only one part of it. They nail it.
Jack Hawkins
Jack Hawkins

Super Reviewer

October 29, 2012
'Easy Rider' is unquestionably important, it's a seminal film. It was a large contributing factor to the birth of an era of burgeoning talent and art that produced many of the greatest films ever made. Easy Rider is a transgressive, political film; few creations have been so lauded for capturing the zeitgeist.

However, to a modern audience, I feel it's more of an artefact than a film. To be frank, I didn't particularly enjoy it. I didn't find it that interesting, it didn't resonate with me that much. One connection it made with me was how it almost shattered that romanticised idea of riding the highways of America. Well, it didn't shatter it, but it certainly shows the potential emptiness of the experience. However, I'd still love to drive around America, but I'd gladly ditch the spirituality for clean hotel rooms and nice corpulent plates of Americana. I'd also prefer a muscle car.

So, given its legacy, 'Easy Rider' is a hard film to judge. It would be ignorant of me to totally trash it, but I do think it's overrated, and I certainly wouldn't recommend it.
Dan S

Super Reviewer

October 20, 2007
A respectable, if over-rated film concerning drug dealing bikers who set off to make a big pay day in Mexico, and how their mission results in them traveling across country, meeting a variety of people. While the first half is a wandering tale that is not that interesting, the second half finally starts to formalize, with an LSD trip scene that would make Kubrick proud. The ending is appropriately unexpected and straight out of Hell, making the film worthwhile in the end. It is no classic like many critics claim, but it is a memorable time capsule at an interesting time where people like bikers were frowned upon and society was changing.
TheDudeLebowski65
TheDudeLebowski65

Super Reviewer

November 14, 2011
Easy Rider is the seminal road film and is a legendary film in the cinematic medium. Directed by the late Dennis Hopper, Easy Rider tells the story of two bikers who head down to Mardi Gras. Along the way they meet many colorful people. Easy Rider is an important milestone in cinema because it changed the way cinema was made as it showed a more realistic way in telling a story because of the fact that Easy Rider had a more realistic, documentary feel to its story. Easy Rider is a period piece that captures the feel of the 60's perfectly. The film shows the chaos of late 60's of the Vietnam War, its toll on the country and really the end of an era of so called peace and love. Easy Rider is a raw, gritty portrait that showcases all that with incredible realism. This is a brilliant film that gives us a taste of the 60's. The film is an important milestone in cinema, and is in my opinion, the most important road film ever made. The performances here are great. Hopper, Fonda and Nicholson deliver performances that are memorable. This is a raw picture that if you're looking for the realism, the feel of the 60's, then look no further than Easy Rider. This is a film that can't be dismissed. Easy Rider is a film that forever shaped and changed cinema and remains one of the most important Cult films ever made.
Graham J

Super Reviewer

October 30, 2011
Capturing a moment in time perfectly, this film is a time capsule to 1969. Though it now seems very dated to me, it does feature a truly great performance from Jack Nicholson.
middleeasternfilms
middleeasternfilms

Super Reviewer

June 1, 2008
Trippy late-60's account of two biker friends who take the money from a cocaine deal and travel to New Orleans to partake in Mardi Gras. Along the way they pick up a drifting hippy and a well-connected alcoholic (played by Jack Nicholson) and meet several classes of southerners who don't like their long hair. The excessive drug use in this almost got me baked halfway through the film, but then again it was the 60's and Dennis Hopper so you had to expect it from the times. Excellent visualizations with a deeper meaning about finding freedom.
axadntpron
axadntpron

Super Reviewer

May 26, 2011
Easy Rider is a cool movie. By cool I don't mean good. I mean that it features cool music, cool bikes, and a couple of dudes having a good time. While I can appreciate the film as piece of counter-culture cinema that spoke to a growing population of dissenters of the cold war consensus, it isn't a film that stands on its own. Hopper isn't a particularly good director and unless I didn't "get" his performance, his character was rather obnoxious and bland. Even Nicholson, who is at his hammiest in this role, blows Hopper out of the water whenever they share the screen. Yet, don't get me wrong, there are some good parts to the film. Scenes such as the one in the diner which showcases the oppression that those of the counter-culture faced, actually present some rather great moments. Yet, they sadly cannot sustain an entire film in which the whole idea seems to be "Hey look at us, we are the counter-culture!" In the end, I guess I just wanted to care about the characters and aside from their brief fireside conversations, the viewer gets very little in the way of what drives these men.
I know this is an iconic piece of film. In fact, I can still hear the collective erection from adolescent males from the combination of motorcycles and Steppenwolf. Yet, the movie as a whole, doesn't really hold up as a stand alone piece of cinema.
Lucas M

Super Reviewer

May 20, 2011
Easy Rider, one of the best films of 69, the birth of a new generation, that showing two bikers with the wish to escape of a conservative society, and find a America of freedon, which don't exist. The confrontation between Billy with Captain America against prejudice. A surrealist portrait from a ride. But the film presents another vision, a evil side from the protagonist Billy. Screenplay, written by Fonda, Hopper and Southern, direction by Hopper and great performing made by Nicholson, Peter and Dennis, with the soundtrack, are terrific. Easy Rider, for some people probably will go looks like a propaganda hippie film, that in some way it's. Fresh.
Jennifer X

Super Reviewer

April 29, 2011
The cinematic cadenza was royally explosive.
Mr Awesome
Mr Awesome

Super Reviewer

March 23, 2011
Is it a biker flick, a road picture, a cowboy movie, or a symbollic look at the battle between 60s counterculture and mainstream America (more specifically, southern America)? The film that was a cultural touchstone for the flower power generation manages to be all these things while also being a simple, quality indie-style film. And simple it is: the plot involves two hippy bikers (Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper) taking a trip from California to New Orleans for mardi gras and meeting the entire cross-section of the American population. Some greet them with open arms (the lost souls of a hippy commune) and some, like the southern cops, not so much. Maybe at times it does club you over the head with symbolism (a character called Captain America has an american flag on his leather jacket and rides a bike painted in the flag colors and has an american flag helmet- alright, we get it, hippies can be patriotic too... conservatives don't have exclusive rights to patriotism), but much like the rock music of the era, you can't help but appreciate the earnestness. Jack Nicolson has a scene-stealing supporting role as a drunken southern lawyer who decides to turn on, tune in and drop out with the two bikers. I read somewhere the actors were smoking real weed when sitting around the campfire, and Jack delivers some great UFO-inspired dialogue in that scene. Like most westerns, there's a saloon scene (well, actually it's a restaurant) where the heroes are bullied by the local ruffians, and a great scene towards the end where Hopper's character raises a literal middle finger towards death. At the advent of the seventies, it's a bittersweet ending to the flower-power generation's tale, as the rebels without causes get slowly lost to the winds.
Michael G

Super Reviewer

November 5, 2006
While its a great and important movie, Easy Rider didn't hold up on a second (or was it my third...?) viewing for me. Sure, Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper did well in their roles and it probably paints an appropriately perfect and frightening portrayal of America in the late 60s. However there are points in Easy Rider where it merely comes off as a collection of beautifully photographed series of landscape music videos for the movie's brilliant soundtrack. Easy Rider gets more uncomfortable and subsequently more frightening as its short but sweet running time goes on with a climax that makes me think twice about saying I was born too late. Jack Nicholson is great and his campfire scenes with Fonda and Hopper are brilliant. Terry Southern's dialogue is magnificent and the Mardi Gras acid trip was cool, all while knowing when to let the viewer off the hook. A great movie but by no means a masterpiece.
Tim S

Super Reviewer

January 24, 2011
Spoller: I am going to get a lot of shit for this next review. I am putting this is the context as if seeing it within the time. In other words, look at it as if this movie came out today about things going on today. If I was sitting in a theater in the seventies, I would think this same thing: this movie is overrated. I know, in the context of when it came out and it's rich history, that everyone is supposed to fall in love with it because it paved the way for a beautiful time in film. For that, I appreciate it, but, as an overall movie, it is no more than a fifty page script with tons and tons of traveling shots. I never connected with Dennis Hopper or Peter Fonda, but loved Jack Nicholson. And I think the whole rednecks wanting to kill hippies is a little overplayed. Not mention the tripping acid scene is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too long. To put these guys up as heroes when they are no more than drug dealers is a little much for me. Maybe it's the fact that I think that I hate hippies, but, at the end of the day, I appreciate what it did for the rest of the filmmakers of the era, but it just doesn't hold up for me.
AJ V

Super Reviewer

September 5, 2010
Although this film is normally considered a classic biker movie and the best of the genre, I didn't think it was all that fantastic. I liked it, but I've seen better biker movies. The cast is good, but I kind of wanted to see Nicholson's character in more of the movie. There are some really psychedelic scenes interspersed in this movie with the more normal biker type scenes, which felt weird. The story is interesting, but like the bikers it kind of wanders around, which is cool but kind of annoying at the same time. Overall, it's good, but it's not the best biker movie around.
hunterjt13
hunterjt13

Super Reviewer

November 14, 2010
I like the bookends of this film. it begins with Captain America feeding a money-filled tube into the gas tank of his chopper, which is painted to look like the American flag. The metaphor is obvious after a bit of thought: fucking the flag with money, a clever, hippie criticism of what they saw as the American descent. And starting with Nicholson's "they hate you for your freedom" monologue, the film begins to assume a direction that was lacking during the first hour. In contrast to Beach Blanket Bingo, which came out four years earlier and attempted to reach the youth of the sixties, it is easy to see how this film became the anthem of a generation.
But over thirty years later, its themes and plot prove not to be transcendent. I think of Casablanca and Annie Hall, which have stood the test of time and play well today, and Easy Rider doesn't rise to that status. I think this is because it's rooted in anger, in a binary view of hippie culture versus mainstream culture, and for these filmmakers, the mainstream culture is pure, unadulterated, anti-egalitarian evil, in contrast to the embodiment of freedom that is hippies' ability to smoke grass, drop acid, fuck, and just drive, man.
Even within the context of filmmaking and story construction, Easy Rider, divorced from the themes of its plot, leaves something to be desired. Much of the middle hour is composed of riding montages, which quickly become sixties music videos and do little to advance the plot. I understand that part of the point is that freedom means freedom from the traditional narrative structure, but I found myself wishing I could fast forward but afraid I'd miss the reason for this film's canonical status.
I didn't fast forward; I did watch all of it, and I was disappointed.
rubystevens
rubystevens

Super Reviewer

November 2, 2007
a film that changed the course of hollywood, making way for small independent features and experimentation even at the major studios! r.i.p. billy
Conner R

Super Reviewer

November 18, 2009
Definitely one of the best counter-culture movies of all time, right up there with Cool Hand Luke. It's really experimental, but I think it captured the essence of America. You saw the beauty along with the ugly. The hostility brought upon two harmless men with long hair is frighteningly surreal. It just goes to show you how naive and one sided people can be. While the ending is extremely tragic, it just gives more power to the message. Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda played their parts perfectly and you got to see a crazy supporting role from Jack Nicholson. The transitions are my favorite touch, it just shows the genius of Dennis Hopper as a director. I would really like to see his original three hour cut because you do feel a sense of speed in the film that I don't think was intended.
Dean !

Super Reviewer

January 3, 2007
The ultimate road trip film that is regarded a cult classic. For what it is about and at the time it was made I can imagine it made a big impact back then. A time when many things were changing in America. As a film though there are long quiet parts and a lot of random scenes that don't make a lot of sense. Great soundtrack though!
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