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critics consensus

Though Hurly Burly offers a showcase of powerhouse performances from its leads, it's held back by a meandering narrative and verbose explorations of cynicism. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

Eddie (Sean Penn) is a confused and reckless man with a group of equally problematic friends. His roommate, caustic and sleazy Mickey (Kevin Spacey), is sleeping with Eddie's love, Darlene (Robin Wright Penn), because he can. His buddy Phil (Chazz Palminteri) is prone to violent rages that worry Eddie. All of them ruminate on their lives while consuming drugs and alcohol. Another friend, Artie (Garry Shandling), eventually arrives with a young date (Anna Paquin) who is ready for a fun night.

Cast & Crew

David Rabe
Screenwriter
Carl Colpaert
Executive Producer
H. Michael Heuser
Executive Producer
Nicholas Paleologos
Executive Producer
Frederick Zollo
Executive Producer
David Baerwald
Original Music
Petra Haden
Original Music
Steve Lindsey
Original Music
Changwei Gu
Cinematographer
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Critic Reviews for Hurlyburly

All Critics (37) | Top Critics (9) | Fresh (22) | Rotten (15)

Audience Reviews for Hurlyburly

  • Dec 13, 2009
    Self-indulgent b.s. Spacey proves he can talk a million-miles-a-minute about a whole lot of nothing.
    Laura C Super Reviewer
  • Jun 08, 2009
    I've read a lot of feedback to this film, which is by and large rather negative. I've noticed that people who dislike the characters occupying Hurlyburly often criticize the film itself as a result. We are not intended to embrace the lifestyles of these characters. This is a picture that encompasses a sub-culture and the neuroses of certain types of people. It is an intelligent, articulate piece with a venomous sense of cynicism and blunt sensibility. The men focused on are self-obsessed chauvinists, but they are not reduced to amplification of their flaws. Their pain and dilemmas are familiar, and they serve towards an unnerving portrait of emptiness. I loved this movie because I love great acting. Watching what some of these actors do with the script is so exciting and astonishing, particularly the brilliant Sean Penn. The writing and performances are phenomenal, but this is a movie that probably only appeals to people who like stage-oriented pieces.
    Mike T Super Reviewer
  • Mar 04, 2008
    With this cast, the film should have been so much better than it is. It's a pleasant enough ride, that ultimately goes nowhere.
    Anthony V Super Reviewer
  • Jul 04, 2007
    Clever dialogue, great cinematics, and rolling plotlines. Those who appreciate educated English, method acting, and well-rounded characters, will enjoy this film. If all you want is hip hop slang and Bruckheimer action, go elsewhere.
    Kevin M Super Reviewer

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