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The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover (1977)

PG  |   |  Biography, Drama  |  December 1977 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 394 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 4 critic

The story of the late J. Edgar Hoover, who was head of the FBI from 1924-1972. The film follows Hoover from his racket-busting days through his reign under eight U.S. presidents.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Wainwright ...
Lionel McCoy
Florence Hollister
Dwight Webb
Carrie DeWitt (as Roneé Blakley)
Howard Da Silva ...
Dave Hindley
Michael Sacks ...
Raymond St. Jacques ...
Hoover's Mother


The story of the late J. Edgar Hoover, who was head of the FBI from 1924-1972. The film follows Hoover from his racket-busting days through his reign under eight U.S. presidents.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The files that escaped the shredder have become an incredible motion picture. From the Kennedys to Martin Luther King. From cab drivers to Congressmen. From housewives to hostesses. He had something on 58 million people. It was all in his files. Now you can see how he used it.


Biography | Drama


PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

December 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

F.B.I. Arquivo Secreto  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Did You Know?


Larry Cohen cast Lloyd Nolan because of Nolan's work in such films about the FBI as 'G' Men (1935), The House on 92nd Street (1945) and The Street with No Name (1948), noting that he couldn't imagine making an FBI film without him. See more »


Lionel McCoy: [sarcastically] Give my regards to the Wizard of Oz!
See more »


Version of J. Edgar (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

El stinkeroo
20 May 2009 | by See all my reviews

I was intrigued to see this film, hitherto unknown to me, listed on one of the cable channels. Curious about the presence of some fairly reputable names - Crawford, Lloyd Nolan, Jose Ferrer, Celeste Holm, Rip Torn, Howard daSilva, I gave it a shot. I must agree with the consensus of negative opinions expressed here. The film is stunningly awful. The only decent thing about it is the technical quality of the cinematography. Broderick Crawford phones in his lines. The other big names do a decent job with the wretched material they are given, but the rest of the acting is at the high school drama club level. Particularly awful is the guy who plays Hoover as a young man. The movie also can't seem to decide on its own outlook. If Hoover is to be considered a consummate wretch and and evil person, the movie does not do enough to convey that. There is altogether too much of the "a great man gone wrong" attitude. In short, there's a reason this movie is largely forgotten.

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