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Hoffa (1992)

The story of the notorious American labor union figure Jimmy Hoffa, who organizes a bitter strike, makes deals with members of the organized crime syndicate and mysteriously disappears in 1975.



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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Red Bennett
Ted Harmon
Solly Stein
Joanne Neer ...
Soignee Woman


Jack Nicholson's portrait of Teamsters Union leader Jimmy Hoffa, as seen through the eyes of his friend Bobby Ciaro (Danny DeVito). This film follows Hoffa's struggle to shape America's most influential labor union through his countless battles with the RTA. As he fights for workers' rights, Hoffa locks horns with industry management, organized crime and Attorney General Robert Kennedy. In 1975, four years after serving his prison term, Hoffa disappears, in one of America's most fascinating unsolved crime mysteries. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He was capable of anything. He wasn't afraid of anyone. That's why everyone was afraid of him. He didn't want law, he wanted justice. See more »


Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





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Release Date:

25 December 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hoffa  »


Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Hoffa and Ciaro encounter the trucker convoy en route to prison, the facility in the background is Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, where both were incarcerated. See more »


When Red Bennett is standing on the truck outside the Kreger warehouse, he is talking into an RCA Type 88-A microphone. A newspaper in a later scene shows that this event took place around January 1935. The 88-A wasn't manufactured until 1938. See more »


[first lines]
Bobby Ciaro: Want me to go call him up?
Jimmy Hoffa: Uh-unh.
Bobby Ciaro: Want a cup of coffee?
Jimmy Hoffa: No.
Bobby Ciaro: Want to go?
[Hoffa gives him a scornful glance]
Bobby Ciaro: You okay?
Jimmy Hoffa: Yeah.
See more »

Crazy Credits

there are no opening credits and the title of the film at the beginning. See more »


Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Danny DeVito/Bon Jovi (1993) See more »


When You're Smiling
Written by Mark Fisher, Joe Goodwin and Larry Shay
See more »

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User Reviews

Union city blues
18 June 2014 | by See all my reviews

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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