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Jake Van Dorn is a businessman from the American heartland who shares strong Calvinist convictions with most of his countrymen. His teenage daughter is missing from her church youth convention trip to California and Van Dorn hires a private investigator to find her. The result of the investigation is his daughter is spotted in a cheap X-rated movie. Van Dorn decides to bring her back personally and during the quest he becomes familiar with the pornographic underworld. Written by
Dragan Antulov <email@example.com>
Originally actor Warren Beatty wanted to play the lead role and was attached to portray Jake Van Dorn. However, Beatty wanted Paul Schrader to rewrite the script so he would be either the girl's brother or boyfriend and would be searching instead for either his sister or his girlfriend and not his daughter. When Schrader refused, Beatty passed on the project. Beatty then went onto star, co-script and co-direct his own production of Heaven Can Wait (1978). See more »
When Jake has returned to L.A. and fires his detective, he creates a list of establishments to do his own research and that evening and drives around visiting places on his list. The first place he visits has a street number of 739 (visible in frame) but in looking at address detail in the long shot of the list itself, there are no references to a street number of 739 anywhere. See more »
Look, how important do you think sex is?
Well then we're just alike. I mean, you think it's so unimportant that you don't even do it. I think it's so unimportant that I don't care who I do it with.
See more »
Hardcore is the mirror image of Boogie Nights. Whereas Boogie Nights the pornography industry is seen from the participant's point of view, Hardcore shows it from the outside. It's not a pretty picture.
Though the film itself doesn't come off in many ways, no question that George C. Scott's performance in the lead is strong dynamic stuff. He's a Midwest businessman of conservative values from Grand Rapids, Michigan whose daughter runs off during a church youth convention out in Southern California.
It would have been very easy to have made Scott's character something of ridicule. This was right around the time of the founding of the Moral Majority and Scott's church seems just the kind to have signed up for that. Instead Scott creates a sympathetic and totally believable character as the father who dominates the film.
In order to accomplish his mission he has to invade a world he hasn't a clue about, but he proves surprisingly resourceful.
Also look for a good performance by Peter Boyle as a private detective who operates on both sides of the moral and immoral.
Hardcore is not a great film, but it's a great performance by George C. Scott.
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