Steal This Movie - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Steal This Movie Reviews

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½ November 13, 2012
Interesting film about a very interesting man. D'Onofrio is pretty much the only man to play Hoffman.
Super Reviewer
March 21, 2012
Based on the times of Abbie Hoffman speaking out in the 60s against vietnam and various other things, wanted by the F.B.I and going on the run, and F.B.i corruption, was part of his story and depicted here, D'onorfrio is a good watch and the look of the film feels very authentic especially a 2000 film, archive footage and montage also helping out, yet another in a long line of 60s american history and while not fantastic a interesting watch.
½ October 10, 2011
Not much to say here, the acting was cringe worthy. The movie is just not up to par.
Super Reviewer
July 8, 2011
Steal This Movie is an interesting, captivating, and for the most part unknown biopic of Abbie Hoffman. I will watch anything Vincent D'Onorfio is in; no matter if it's a critically acclaimed film like Full Metal Jacket, a television show(Law and Order) or a unknown movie like this or Staten Island. He's a very good and under appreciated actor. Once again he gives an eccentric and flawless performance as a leader of the counter-culture movement of the 1960's. I won't go into the full details of Abbies life, but basically the government started to perceive him as dangerous and forced him to "go underground." He left behind a wife and son who he could only talk to through letters as he was being searched for by the FBI. The last half of Steal This Movie is damn near flawless. The movie features a great soundtrack featuring "Season of the Witch," "The Star Spangled Banner"(Hendrix style) and many protest songs that we've all heard throughout the years. Steal This Movie is definitely a movie that deserves some respect.
April 14, 2011
Disappointing, at best. Having just finished "Revolution for the Hell of It", I was disheartened to discover that Abbie Hoffman's message just didn't transfer well to film. I have the utmost respect for Hoffman, and it's plausible that no one could have portrayed him well enough to fit my impossible standards. I am a huge fan of Vincent D'Onofrio, and feel like he did a stellar job. The true flaws lie in the overly simplistic writing and plot development.
February 17, 2011
Worth seeing. [dvd 2011-02]
Super Reviewer
January 21, 2011
Good movie based on the life of Abbie Hoffman. Most of it is told in flashbacks. A journalist is writing a piece on Abbie Hoffman, and through interviews with him, his wife, friends and lawyers we see what happened to make Abbie go "underground"...which is where he is at the beginning of the film. This covers the time from his first arrest, to his coming out of the underground. Vincent D'Onofrio does a great job as the man himself, and Janeane Garofalo is wonderful as his wife Anita.
Super Reviewer
January 21, 2011
It pains me to give this movie two stars but as a great advocate for Abbie Hoffman and the Yippie movement in general, I cannot condone such an inaccurate representation of the great mans life. Although this movie, on the surface is energetic, informed and entertaining, after reading Hoffman's autobiography and his own book "Steal This Book" I cannot say that this movie represented the man he truly was, more than represented an over illustrated and almost cartoon like version of one of the most inspirational people of the twenty first century. Abbie Hoffman - five stars. Steal This Movie - two stars. Enough said really.
October 25, 2010
No one could do Abbie justice; larger than life in real life, grown as legends do, he was the epitome of what we were trying to say and do back then. The fact this movie isn't illegal is a testament to our effectieness as "crazy kids".
½ June 25, 2010
Though I do like Independent movies, this isn't typically the type of movie I would choose to watch. I'm glad I chose to watch this one. Once I got over thinking of D'Onofrio as his L&O cop character, he was great in the role. Watching the 60s and 70s play out through the character's eyes was very interesting.
April 3, 2010
My own political views aside, the puerile, immature kind of activism portrayed here really grates on me. Vincent D'Onofrio does a pretty good job here, but the politics of the story (which are, more or less, its bread and butter) don't appeal to me. Granted, I haven't seen this in a while, but I doubt my opinion would be much different after another viewing.
February 27, 2010
This was an amazing story of an amazing man who had a hand in changing the world! We need an Abbie Hoffman NOW! All the actors cast did a phenominal job. Really is a must see for everyone! Reminder that the government has not, is not, and never will be acting for the people!!!
½ January 31, 2010
very good bio.. Vincent D'Onofrio is incredible! more like mix of documentary + drama..
Super Reviewer
December 11, 2009
This Movie caused me very bad headache.
½ September 11, 2009
awsome flick if you love the 1st ammendment
July 20, 2009
Abbie Hoffman is one of those galvanizing counter-culture icons that I've always had problems appreciating. His seemingly non-sequitur approach to the political landscape of the 60's and 70's has always rubbed me the wrong way. Whenever I've seen him in documentaries and interviews, I generally find his actions, his words, his be little more than puerile showboating, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. As a consequence, I have to admit that I've neglected reading any of his books or spending any time researching him beyond the sound bites one might run across on television. After having seen Steal This Movie, however, I believe I've done myself a bit of a disservice. Abbie Hoffman was a calculating, intelligent, and charismatic individual, and his savvy with manipulating the media to draw attention to his causes is perhaps unparalleled among his contemporaries. I believe his greatest gift was his ability to take complex political ideologies and boil them down into memorable sound-bites. Now, I?ve argued in the past that Hoffman dumbed down his messages into a series of banal, screamable slogans. I'm not alone in the sentiment; this criticism of Hoffman's methodology found favor even among his own ranks. Hoffman himself once said, ?A modern revolutionary group heads for the television station.? In many respects, he?s right. You can?t carry on a dialogue with someone who isn?t listening. Hoffman would often take a seemingly ridiculous political stance in order to get attention. Once he?d captured his audience, he?d then hang a more lucid argument on the silly framework he?d created. His philosophy of making protest fun and of insuring that his message was reaching a mass audience worked. Many equally vociferous 60's activists have been lost to us because their messages simply didn't resonate like Hoffman's. He was one of the movement's most successful PR people.

As for the film, I?m both surprised and disappointed by it. It feels like a made for TV vehicle. Each scene is shot with a by-the-books vanilla simplicity. Plus, the sets aren?t always believable; they look like a series of back-lot quickies. Still, the flick is astute at incorporating archival footage with modern, spliced-in material. In other words, it?s sometimes hard to tell what?s live and what?s Memorex. It makes me wonder whether the fake news story footage was created by a far more accomplished editor than the one who ruined the set sequences?

The movie is also a little slavish in its interpretation of the events surrounding Hoffman?s life. If there?s room to interpret an action so that Hoffman comes out looking shiny, that interpretation is followed. For instance, there's a scene where Hoffman is busted selling large quantities of cocaine during a sting operation. The movie sugar-coats it as political harassment...that Hoffman?s being setup to take a fall because of his beliefs. This is a convenient version of the story. Hoffman actually was caught selling large quantities of cocaine, which seems to me reason enough to arrest him, with or without any malevolent posturing by the government. To the film?s credit, however, most of the details carry the weight of accuracy, specifically because the filmmakers brought in Judy and Stew Albert (Abbie's friends,) Anita Hoffman (Abbie's ex-wife,) and Gerry Lefcourt (Abbie's attorney) as consultants. It would be hard to compile a better list of consultants since all of these people were around during Hoffman's early career and were involved with most of his most famous moments.

Strangely, though, my greatest pet peeve against Steal This Movie is its soundtrack. The music is from the appropriate era, but only a few of the songs are originals. Most are covers, admittedly from respected artists, but really, how hard could it have been to secure the rights to the real music? Maybe they didn't try. No doubt they consulted some hip youngun' who informed them that all those dusty old hippie songs needed to be filtered through Cheryl Crow's throat before Generation Y would stick a fork in them. Whatever the reason, the decision to update one of the best decades in music has, in my opinion, doomed the project to perpetual play on Sunday afternoon television. The only thing worse than a best-of album is a tribute album, especially a tribute album that's pretending to be the real deal.

The movie does have one strength...the performances. I love Vincent D'Onofrio. He's a chameleon of the highest caliber and brings his A-game to every project. Full Metal Jacket, JFK, Men in Black, Ed Wood...heck, I think he's been hit up to play Orson Welles twice. He sorta looks like the dude. When they make a biography about Meatloaf, they'll undoubtedly hit him up for that too. And before you mention The Cell as a counter argument to his acting supremacy, I'm ignoring that disastrous flick because it's way too crappy to be blamed on any one man. Long story short, D'Onofrio dials in a stellar Abbie Hoffman. I'd also be remiss to ignore the rather believable performance by Janeane Garofalo as Anita. Sure, she plays herself in every movie, but it actually works for this role. And lastly, Kevin Pollak is very good as Lefcourt.

Would I recommend Steal This Movie? I guess I'd have to say yes. Despite its glaring peccadilloes, it made me want to learn more about Abbie Hoffman, which seems as good a reason as any to give the film a nod.
½ June 12, 2009
I had just finished watching a law and order:CI marathon when i watched this so it was like a vincent d'onofrio overload. In the beginning I just wanted to turn this movie off, it was boring, wierd, and confusing. I dont really like the sixties and seventies stuff, its like creepy and im glad i didnt live in that time. But by the end of the movie i really liked it. It kind of made me sad though. They are all like dead now so it was kind of depressing. and i love janeane Garofalo.
June 3, 2009
Awesome docu-movie. Totally enjoyed watching it.
May 23, 2009
Poorly shot movie about '60s Yippie Left-Wing activist Abby Hoffman, who I never heard of until this film came out. I really hate "historical" movies, and thought all the protesting that results in being beaten up by police is retarded. Abbie Hoffman didn't really accomplish anything. Well, wait, that's not true, he did accomplish something at the end of the movie but I was so bored by that time I wasn't really paying attention. I truely hate movies about politics, or the past. Loved Milk though. But this movie is no Milk.
May 6, 2009
If you don't know who Abbie Hoffman is, you certainly will after watching this! Wish i could've met and shook that man's hand before he passed! Abbie Hoffman was one of the coolest americans ever!
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