Continuing the story of Aurora Greenway in her latter years. After the death of her daughter, Aurora struggled to keep her family together, but has one grandson in jail, a rebellious ... See full summary »
Jack Nicholson's portrait of Union leader James R. Hoffa, as seen through the eyes of his friend, Bobby Ciaro (Danny DeVito). The film follows Hoffa through his countless battles with the RTA and President Roosevelt all the way to a conclusion that negates the theory that he disappeared in 1975. Written by
According to Danny DeVito in the DVD Commentary, his young son was present on the set the day the scene was shot in which Hoffa rants to Delasandro about getting control of the union back from Fitsimmons. The tirade included the line "I'm gonna do what I gotta do!" According to DeVito, for months afterward whenever he asked his son do to something (i.e. clean his room, take out the trash, do his homework, etc.) his son would mimic Jack Nicholson and say "Dad...I'm gonna do what I gotta do!" See more »
When Hoffa is shot for the final time, the back window of his car is shattered, but when it is driven up into the back of the semi, you can see the window is undamaged. See more »
Danny DeVito directs and co-stars with Jack Nicholson in Hoffa. DeVito had high hopes for the film and felt that not only would it be a commercial success but a critical one with awards for cinematography, production design and acting.
The film failed at the box office and did not garner the awards expected. The reason because the film is a honourable failure. There is a script by David Mamet and although there are some great production values its not consistent. There is a great scene where Hoffa is talking to some people in a corridor of a building with big windows. Through the windows you can see a courtyard with a market going on with people going about in period costume. In a costume drama, many other people because of the budgetary concerns would had done it just in a walled corridor.
However you have scenes where its obviously done in a film set and some scenes are obviously staged such as the hunting scene.
The biggest problem is the film does not address the audience outside of the USA who have little or no idea of who Hoffa was. I heard about him as a college student mainly to do with the fact that this a notorious Union leader who is now supporting some bridge under a highway!
During the initial scenes when DeVito's character who is a composite of several real life persons first meets Hoffa, I had no idea when the meeting took place. In the 1930s or 40s or the 50s? When Hoffa takes over the Teamster union and wants some people fired, why exactly did he want this? Who were this people that he wanted fired? As we do not know this people do we care? What exactly did Hoffa do wrong for him to be imprisoned? Getting a shady Italian-American to make money for you via some loans is not illegal surely at that time unless it was actual money laundering. Wikipedia tells me that it was fraud, jury tampering and bribery. The film is called Hoffa yet we know so little about him after viewing the film.
The film is told in flashbacks as Hoffa waits for a meeting in a parking lot of a diner. Again we are not told of the time period of this setting which should be the mid 1970s as that is when he disappeared although the ending in this film leave little doubt what happens to Hoffa.
Its a well constructed film of a man that divides America but DeVito the director needed Mamet to put more detailed in the script so we have a better idea of who Hoffa was.
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