The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover

The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover

Director: Larry Cohen Cast: Broderick Crawford, José Ferrer, Michael Parks


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Larry Cohen's pseudo-biography of J. Edgar Hoover (Broderick Crawford) was virtually howled off the screens upon its release in 1977. Today, with the cross-dressing Hoover so much a matter of historical record that even Oliver Stone didn't bother to make too much of a point of it in Nixon, the Cohen film plays more like a dramatic re-enactment rather than the puerile paranoid fantasy it appeared to be at the time. Unfortunately, Cohen's method is part exploitation and part historical tableau. On the one hand, Cohen dramatizes historical moments in Hoover's momentous life story -- the shooting of John Dillinger in front of Chicago's Biograph Theater, his first arrest -- with a deadening solemnity (even abandoning the backlot facsimiles to shoot on the actual historical locations). On the other hand, Cohen relishes his scenes of Hoover's homosexuality and his propensity for sitting in the dark with a bottle of whiskey, replaying tapes of the amorous liaisons of high government officials -- the decadently homosexual Hoover built his political power base by getting all the dirt he could on the government's movers and shakers -- particularly their sexual liaisons -- and blackmailing them for their support when he could not get it in any other way. A true schizophrenic masterwork in its time, the film is now muted by a reality more incredible than Cohen ever imagined in his wildest dreams.

Product Details

Release Date: 01/15/2011
UPC: 0883904237754
Original Release: 1977
Source: Mgm Mod
Time: 1:52:00
Sales rank: 35,416

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Broderick Crawford J. Edgar Hoover
José Ferrer Lionel McCoy
Michael Parks Robert F. Kennedy
Ronee Blakley Carrie DeWitt
Rip Torn Dwight Webb
Celeste Holm Florence Hollister
Michael Sacks Melvin Purvis
Dan Dailey Clyde Tolson
Raymond St. Jacques Martin Luther King, Jr.
John Marley Dave Hindley
Howard Da Silva Franklin D. Roosevelt
June Havoc Hoover's Mother
James Wainwright Young Hoover
Lloyd Nolan Attorney General Stone
Ellen Barber FBI Secretary
Lloyd Gough Walter Winchell
Brad Dexter Alvin Karpis
Jennifer Lee Ethel Brunette
George Plimpton Quentin Reynolds
Jack Cassidy Damon Runyon
E.G. Marshall Actor
Andrew Duggan Lyndon B. Johnson

Technical Credits
Larry Cohen Director,Producer,Screenwriter
John M. Crewdson Consultant/advisor
Cathy Davis Production Designer,Set Decoration/Design
Lewis Friedman Costumes/Costume Designer
Paul Glickman Cinematographer
Chris Lebenzon Editor
Carolyn Loewenstein Set Decoration/Design
Artie Mandelberg Associate Producer
Miklós Rózsa Score Composer
Peter Sabiston Associate Producer

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