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Straight Time (1978)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  14 July 1978 (Norway)
7.4
Your rating:
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 4,102 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 38 critic

After being released on parole, a burglar attempts to go straight, get a regular job, and just go by the rules. He soon finds himself back in jail at the hands of a power-hungry parole ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay), 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jenny Mercer
...
Willy Darin
...
Jerry Schue
...
Rita Taggart ...
Carol Schue
...
Selma Darin
Sandy Baron ...
Manny
...
Henry Darin (as Jacob Busey)
Tina Menard ...
Hotel Manager
Stephanie Ericson-Baron ...
Bar Patron
Dave Kelly ...
Counterman
Don Sommese ...
Waiter
Kit Jee Wong ...
Grocer
...
Grocery Clerk
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Storyline

After being released on parole, a burglar attempts to go straight, get a regular job, and just go by the rules. He soon finds himself back in jail at the hands of a power-hungry parole officer. When he is released again, he assaults the parole officer, steals his car, and returns to a life of crime. Written by Andrew DeLaVergne <ajd2@acsu.buffalo.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

can he go straight or will he go straight back inside? See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

14 July 1978 (Norway)  »

Also Known As:

Libertad condicional  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lead actor Dustin Hoffman prepared for his role as Max Dembo by visiting Folsom Prison. Even though the film is predominantly set outside of jail, Hoffmann wanted the experience of the "conditioning" of penitentiary life and atmosphere in order to characterize a man who had just been released from a gaol after serving a six year sentence. See more »

Goofs

In the diner, Max orders a ginger ale; the waitress brings him a 7-Up. See more »

Quotes

Max Dembo: You know what I'd like to do... Why don't you run me by that hotel we'll check it out.
Mickey: Yeah, well I'll drive you out there but I'm not gonna rob it for you, you have to do that yourself. I got stomach trouble... no guts.
See more »

Connections

References The Wiz (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

Hand Me Down My Walkin' Cane
(uncredited)
Traditional
Performed by Harry Dean Stanton
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A powerful film with some flaws...
30 August 1999 | by (Farifield, CT) – See all my reviews

Gritty, seemingly realistic drama about the life of an ex-con trying to go straight. Hoffman is great in the lead role of new parolee Max Dembo trying to succeed in the outside world despite some strong barriers (Walsh). The supporting performances are quite good, particularly those of Harry Dean, Walsh and Theresa Russell. Look for Kathy Bates as Gary Busey's wife. The settings (seedy Los Angeles in 1977) are good, as are the clothes (!). My issues with the film are 1) Max gets a good setup very quickly (job and hot girlfriend), and 2) his descent into almost psychotically violent and foolish behavior happens quickly. Perhaps he leaves a clue that this metamorphosis will occur when he's having dinner with Russell. I also found the editing to be a bit rough in spots, as scenes unfold with no resolution to certain issues (e.g. Sandy Baron showing up late for a job and disappearing from the film).

Overall, "Straight Time" is a hard-hitting drama with a great performance by Hoffman in a "real" role that was overshadowed by his less fulfilling later roles ("Rainman," "Outbreak," "Sphere"). The film's final scene is quite good, and perhaps answers some questions raised earlier in the film. A "7."

N.B. One would believe that an ex-con who reveals easily verifiable info. about his new girlfriend to his parole officer, then beats up the parole officer, would be foolish to shack up at her place while on the lam. How does the criminal mind work?


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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