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Straight Time
Straight Time
Actors: Dustin Hoffman, Gary Busey, Harry Dean Stanton, M. Emmett Walsh, Theresa Russell
Director: Ulu Grosbard
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
R     2007     1hr 54min

A paroled burglar tries to get a job and keep on the straight-and-narrow. His hard-core parole officer has different ideas and sends him back to jail. When he gets out again, he goes after the parole officer, steals his ca...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Dustin Hoffman, Gary Busey, Harry Dean Stanton, M. Emmett Walsh, Theresa Russell
Director: Ulu Grosbard
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Crime, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Warner Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Dubbed,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 05/22/2007
Original Release Date: 01/01/1978
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1978
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 54min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 9
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English, French, Portuguese, Spanish

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Movie Reviews

'70s seediness at its best
Joe Sixpack -- | Middle America | 12/16/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"A grim, rigidly understated, crime flick, featuring Dustin Hoffman as a tight-lipped, ill-fated career criminal. His onscreen transition from a docile but dignified parolee to a cold, calculating man of action is surprising and effective; the second half of the film is a dry-mouthed slow-drip of adrenaline and dread. Plenty of gritty '70s ambiance, and strong performances by Harry Dean Stanton, Gary Busey and a young Kathy Bates. Theresa Russell is absorbing as the good girl gone wrong who has a puzzling attraction to a very dangerous man. Worth checking out."
Based on the late, great Eddie Bunker's novel
Kirk Alex | 11/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Simply put: one of the finest crime flicks ever made. Hoffman never better. Eddie Bunker has a cameo in it.
Check it out.
Isn't it about time they put this gem out on DVD?"
Great companion piece to Midnight Cowboy
LGwriter | Astoria, N.Y. United States | 05/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This 1978 film, co-written by Eddie Bunker--an actual con known for his realistic stories of criminals and prison life--stars Dustin Hoffman in one of his absolute best roles as Max Dembo, a con who has to contend with an arch-enemy in the form of his ultra-nasty parole officer, played perfectly by none other than M. Emmet Walsh.

Also on hand, as Dembo re-embarks on a life of crime after release from the slammer, are his buds, also former crooks, who are persuaded by Max to once again plunge into the dark side of crime. Gary Busey and Harry Dean Stanton are these guys, and the casting here is right on target. Stanton is always good, but here he's even better as a world-weary guy who's so jaded by his marriage that he's eager to get going with Dembo, rather than having to go through the endlessly boring days of domestic life with his wife (Kathy Bates in an early role, and great as usual).

This is a terrific companion piece to another Dustin Hoffman-starring film, Midnight Cowboy. In both films, we see how the actor gets under the skin of a character who's at rock bottom and teases out of this mess so much humanity that the viewer is glued to the screen. Hoffman in his prime? You bet. Just about no other actor around is this good in this kind of role. He's a malevolent force of nature in Straight Time who has a devastating impact on everyone around him.

One of the most unknown films of the 1970s--because it's so downbeat, the box office gross was really low at the time of its release. But it's a great film, a quintessentially American film whose focus on the underbelly of the great American dream is as strong as a bullwhip.

Get this, see it, and dig it. It's great."
Dustin Hoffman at his absolute best
Garber Jackal | 12/26/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Dustin Hoffman is one of the finest actors of all time, no question about it. 1979 Hoffman won the best actor Oscar for Kramer vs Kramer and had been nomiated three times prior (Graduate '67, Midnight Cowboy '69, Lenny '74), but it's his work in this 1978 sleeper that really showcases just how good an actor he is.

Hoffman plays Max, a man just released from six years of prison and determined to get a job and play it straight. But, his friends draw him back into the life of crime. It's a very straight-forward story; what makes this movie work so well is the acting. 'Straight Time' was a small blip in theaters and it's easy to see why - it's not a crowd-pleasing movie. For those who did see it they knew just how good Hoffman and rest of the cast was. Hoffman should have received his fourth Oscar nomination for this film and both Harry Dean Stanton and M. Emmet Walsh were deserving of supporting Oscar nomations.

I highly recommend this film to anybody who is a Dustin Hoffman fan as I myself am. This is one of my favorite films and I cannot wait for it to be released on DVD."