Straight Time

1978

Straight Time

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.

75%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 8

83%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,990
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Straight Time Photos

Movie Info

Paroled criminal Max Dembo is compelled to withstand the calculated cruelties of parole officer Earl Frank. The more Max tries to go straight, the more he is defeated by circumstance. It eventually becomes clear that neither Hoffman nor his fellow ex-cons will be able to survive looking for legitimate work.

Cast

Dustin Hoffman
as Max Dembo
Theresa Russell
as Jenny Mercer
Harry Dean Stanton
as Jerry Schue
Gary Busey
as Willy Darin
M. Emmet Walsh
as Earl Frank
Kathy Bates
as Selma Darin
Fran Ryan
as Cafe Owner
Rita Taggart
as Carol Schue
Jacob Busey
as Henry Darin
Tina Menard
as Hotel Manager
David Kelly
as Counter Man
Kit Wong
as Grocer
Peter Kwong
as Grocery Clerk
Betty Jane Howarth
as Employment Clerk
Michael Blakley
as 1st Beach Boy
John C. Colton
as 2nd Beach Boy
John Colton
as 2nd Beach Boy
John Gilgreen
as Bank Guard
Mary Craven
as Bank Teller
Peter Jurasik
as Bank Teller
Enid Hendershot
as Girl at Bank
James Ray
as Jewelry Store Manager
Stuart I. Berton
as 1st Salesman
Barry Cahill
as 2nd Salesman
Susan Sherman
as Saleslady
Francesca Drown
as Saleslady
Ernest Taylor III
as Job Applicant
Bob Jarvis
as Police Officer
Corey Rand
as Carlos
View All

Critic Reviews for Straight Time

All Critics (8) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (6) | Rotten (2)

Audience Reviews for Straight Time

  • Dec 26, 2011
    This is not a film about a man moving up in the world of crime, but rather about his decline. The farther up he goes, the harder it is to go back down. Giving up begins to seem more and more futile, even if it means running for the rest of his life. There is a cast of fine performances in "Straight Time", but the best acting comes from Hoffman, whose meticulous performance the film dwells upon. He manifests the character of Max better than any other actor imaginable, and not once does his acting ever falter.
    Stephen E Super Reviewer
  • Apr 19, 2011
    The reason I enjoyed this flick so much, besides the fact that it's a heist flick, is Dustin Hoffman playing against type. Watching Hoffman go Pacino-crazy-like on his parole office is an added bonus. Good for an evening view. One of the underrated, or unheard of for me, rather, gems on netflix instant.
    matt s Super Reviewer
  • Mar 03, 2011
    Based on a novel by Edward Bunker, Straight Time is possibly one of the most realistic cinematic probes into the sociopathic psyche of the career criminal. Great cast, strong script and solid direction by Ulu Grosbard. Not for a moment are you allowed to suspect that hoodlums might be smart or attractive, or that crime pays. Thanks to mjgildea for recommending this, it may have stayed under the radar much longer. <a href="http://s273.photobucket.com/albums/jj203/goji9000/?action=view&current=straighttime.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i273.photobucket.com/albums/jj203/goji9000/straighttime.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>
    El Hombre I Super Reviewer
  • Nov 12, 2010
    I watch a lot of movies and most of them are decent. A lot of the time I've got to convince myself that I didn't just waste a couple hours of my time or I'll have to dig for reasons as to why I liked a particular movie but whatever. But I'll endure long stretches of mediocrity because I know there are movies like Straight Time out there. I know there are obscure and unheard of gems that for one reason or another have been forgotten. This isn't to say Straight Time is a perfect movie. David Shire's hokey and dated score and a slow buildup work against it but this is easily one of Dustin Hoffman's best performances and the rest of the cast is nothing short of brilliant. Once Hoffman's character makes his choice to go back to a life of crime after the first hour, the story just creeps and creeps on you and doesn't let up. Written by Eddie Bunker (Mr. Blue from Reservoir Dogs), who spent much of his life in prison, this movie also gives what I'm guessing is a pretty accurate and definitely gritty portrayal of an ex-con's life. By the time it's over all you can do is as yourself why the hell you haven't seen it before or why Straight Time isn't as celebrated as it should be.
    Michael G Super Reviewer

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