Citizen Cohn Reviews

  • Jun 25, 2020

    Roy Cohn is just a fascinating character I watched this movie after watching the two documentaries and found James Woods portrayal to be eerily accurate. Joe Don Baker actually turns Senator McCarthy into a somewhat sympathetic character. Royalty was Roy Cohn's Mantra and in spite of his excesses, it isn't all that bad a concept. The portion with Joe Welch is interesting because Joe Welch was a ham in his own right and parlayed this performance before McCarthy into the role of a judge into a movie. I think James Woods got the acting job because he and Roy have the same mouth.

    Roy Cohn is just a fascinating character I watched this movie after watching the two documentaries and found James Woods portrayal to be eerily accurate. Joe Don Baker actually turns Senator McCarthy into a somewhat sympathetic character. Royalty was Roy Cohn's Mantra and in spite of his excesses, it isn't all that bad a concept. The portion with Joe Welch is interesting because Joe Welch was a ham in his own right and parlayed this performance before McCarthy into the role of a judge into a movie. I think James Woods got the acting job because he and Roy have the same mouth.

  • Jan 27, 2020

    One of Woods' finest performances and a fascinating look in the "man behind the man" of one of the darker periods in American history.

    One of Woods' finest performances and a fascinating look in the "man behind the man" of one of the darker periods in American history.

  • Oct 18, 2018

    One of the best movies ever. no one can act like cohn; james woods is so convincing that he must be like this in real life..

    One of the best movies ever. no one can act like cohn; james woods is so convincing that he must be like this in real life..

  • Apr 23, 2011

    A well made film, James Woods did a convincing job as Roy Cohn

    A well made film, James Woods did a convincing job as Roy Cohn

  • Nov 06, 2007

    Some imbecile over on IMDB is going on about how McCarthyism bears no relation to the Salem witch trials, because everyone knows there were no witches. Actually, it bears a closer relation than most people realize--there was, in Salem, a very small number of people dabbling in witchcraft (far fewer than the number of those prosecuted for it), but the trials were probably based on spite and economic advantage. However, no one was actually in danger from those who dabbled. It's a common motif to have Roy Cohn haunted by Ethel Rosenberg on his deathbed. It's an intriguing mental image, certainly. Roy Cohn would assuredly have known that, even if Ethel Rosenberg was a spy (she probably wasn't), anything she could have done was substantially less than was done by people who weren't executed. The Rosenbergs simply didn't have access to much in the way of nuclear secrets. If Roy Cohn had a conscience, which is a questionable idea at best, one can imagine him being tormented by it just before he died. In fact, I don't know if Roy Cohn suffered from the level of AIDS dementia implied in this movie. I don't think anyone who can know would say. I know that, to the day he died, Roy Cohn claimed to have liver cancer even as he pulled strings to get AZT. I know that he was disbarred on his deathbed--and that he thoroughly deserved it. (He was disbarred for misappropriation of clients' funds, lying on a bar application, and pressuring a client--who was on his own deathbed at the time--to change his will.) James Woods is a very talented man, excelling in playing horrible, horrible men. He often plays real-life men, usually killers or other unsavoury types. (More on this when we finally get to [i]Ghosts of Mississippi[/i], I should think.) He knows, obviously, that he has a gift for playing these types, and he can even, sometimes, make them likable, when that's what's called for. There are glimmers of this in his Roy Cohn. You even have some sympathy for him as he lies, dying and mad, in a New York hospital. Roy Cohn was a horrible, horrible man, and this is a fascinating portrayal of him. I'm also delighted by the casting of Joe Don Baker as Joseph McCarthy. Still, he's not as over the top as the guy who played McCarthy in [i]Good Night and Good Luck[/i].

    Some imbecile over on IMDB is going on about how McCarthyism bears no relation to the Salem witch trials, because everyone knows there were no witches. Actually, it bears a closer relation than most people realize--there was, in Salem, a very small number of people dabbling in witchcraft (far fewer than the number of those prosecuted for it), but the trials were probably based on spite and economic advantage. However, no one was actually in danger from those who dabbled. It's a common motif to have Roy Cohn haunted by Ethel Rosenberg on his deathbed. It's an intriguing mental image, certainly. Roy Cohn would assuredly have known that, even if Ethel Rosenberg was a spy (she probably wasn't), anything she could have done was substantially less than was done by people who weren't executed. The Rosenbergs simply didn't have access to much in the way of nuclear secrets. If Roy Cohn had a conscience, which is a questionable idea at best, one can imagine him being tormented by it just before he died. In fact, I don't know if Roy Cohn suffered from the level of AIDS dementia implied in this movie. I don't think anyone who can know would say. I know that, to the day he died, Roy Cohn claimed to have liver cancer even as he pulled strings to get AZT. I know that he was disbarred on his deathbed--and that he thoroughly deserved it. (He was disbarred for misappropriation of clients' funds, lying on a bar application, and pressuring a client--who was on his own deathbed at the time--to change his will.) James Woods is a very talented man, excelling in playing horrible, horrible men. He often plays real-life men, usually killers or other unsavoury types. (More on this when we finally get to [i]Ghosts of Mississippi[/i], I should think.) He knows, obviously, that he has a gift for playing these types, and he can even, sometimes, make them likable, when that's what's called for. There are glimmers of this in his Roy Cohn. You even have some sympathy for him as he lies, dying and mad, in a New York hospital. Roy Cohn was a horrible, horrible man, and this is a fascinating portrayal of him. I'm also delighted by the casting of Joe Don Baker as Joseph McCarthy. Still, he's not as over the top as the guy who played McCarthy in [i]Good Night and Good Luck[/i].