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|Index||1315 reviews in total|
368 out of 525 people found the following review useful:
An amazing film, 2 April 2000
Author: jerry from Norfolk, NE
A good friend of mine suggested this film, and I really didnt know what to expect going in, but after this film was over, I sat in stunned silence. I knew that racism was horrible, but I found through this film that it does not come without a terrible price..the loss of love, friends, family...and the realization that everything that you believed to be true isnt always the way things are. Edward Norton's performance takes the viewer through this journey, and its not a pretty one. He goes from an bright young man, to a vengeful bigot, to a remorseful excon with a brothers life in jeopardy, and you feel as though you are looking in on someones life in the course of 2 hrs. All of the acting in this film is first rate, and the ending wasnt quite as predictable as others might have you believe...it is quite shocking, as is much of the film. It causes quite a debate on the way people view others whos skin color is not the same. As Dr. King said, judge me not on the color of my skin, but on the content of my character. I live with racism, because I am a black man living in America...it exists, but if we educate ourselves like the main character in AHX, it wont stay around for much longer. Hopefully it wont be too late, as it was for him. Peace and Love, JB33 Rating 5 stars
458 out of 722 people found the following review useful:
This was probably the best movie I've ever seen, 9 December 1998
Author: Ari (firstname.lastname@example.org) from NY
I honestly don't think I have ever seen a better movie than American History X in my entire life! I may only be 14, but I have seen a lot of movies. I am an avid fan of them, and this one just takes the cake. Edward Norton is just unbelievable. He is the most talented actor I've ever laid eyes on. His performance in the movie is phenomenal. He delves so deep into his character that he can convince the whole audience easily of his neo-nazi role. The look on his face as he walks back from killing one man in the first seen is purely horrifying. The entire move was dramatic, intriguing, and powerful. It really is moving and emotional as well as scary. It is so true to life, and provides the viewer with such insight into the life and events that create a monster such as Derek Vinyard. It answers many questions I have long awaited an answer to such as what could possibly make someone act as Derek did in this movie, yet left open-ended many others that people such as myself may have. Almost every single scene in the movie was extremely captivating. I can't even go on to say more about the acting, other than if Edward Norton does not win best actor this year, I will go absolutely nuts. It's bad enough he lost it to Cuba Gooding Jr. when he was in Primal Fear, which was yet another incredible performance by him. Edward Furlong, the little kid from T2 is astounding as the confused brother of Derek. I was stunned walking out of the theater after seeing American History X, and I don't think I will ever have the benefit of seeing another movie as good as this one as long as I live. I recommend anyone with a good tolerance for violent and graphic depictions go see this movie. I am bewildered as to why director Tony Kaye would ever want out of this success. If I were to rate this movie, as I often do for others in reviewing them for school, I would give it an A+ with all of my heart.
248 out of 322 people found the following review useful:
One of the most powerful movies I have ever seen., 19 July 2005
Author: Boba_Fett1138 from Groningen, The Netherlands
I was expecting a kind of a moralistic movie with an overly present,
almost preaching like message. The movie however turned out to be
extremely powerful mainly due to the professionalism it was made with.
The movie its story is told 'beautifuly' in black & white and color. The quite original directing from Tony Kaye gives the movie a nice visual style and certain atmosphere. The story itself isn't that complicated or extremely original on its own and perhaps at most points even predictable but the way the story is told is phenomenal. This is not a movie with an happy ending or a movie that provides a solution to the racial discrimination problems. It shows what is NOT the solution to the problems and that everything that is occurring is like a vicious circle. The movie does not give a hopeful message but instead shows the dangers and pain you're causing to yourself and your close environment when you're thinking as a white supremacist.
As an anti Neo-Nazi movie this movie works really powerful. I think that its a really good and important thing that this movie is often shown in classrooms.
Edward Norton is truly fantastic in his role. He is very well believable as a Neo-Nazi as well as the reformed person he later turns into in the movie. It's almost like he's playing 2 different characters and he does that so extremely well. Also really good was Edward Furlong who we all long had not seen in a big production. Furlong and Norton are both acting well together in their scene's are highly believable as two brothers.
Also surprising good was the musical score by Anne Dudley who had already won an Oscar for "The Full Monty", the year before.
This was a movie that surprisingly impressed me. As a movie its extremely powerful and important.
258 out of 372 people found the following review useful:
Edward Norton delivers a staggering performance as an extremely intelligent white supremacist who realizes the wrongness of his views and must then try to prevent his younger brother form going down the same, 28 August 2000
Author: Michael DeZubiria (email@example.com) from Luoyang, China
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
American History X is one of the most powerful movies released in years. Not
since Schindler's List has the subject of racism been so potently presented.
The use of black and white cinematography to portray painful flashbacks is
amazing, and the settings, while not necessarily pretty, fit the story
Derek Vineyard's (Edward Norton) transition from a white supremacy leader's protege to a gang leader himself to a changed man is shown mainly through a series of flashbacks to the time before he was sent to prison. The character development and story are amazingly well done, and this is largely a factor of the high quality of the acting. Edward Norton especially, but also Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo, and all of the rest of the cast down to Avery Brooks as Bob Sweeney, the African American high school teacher who comes up with the term American History X, and Stacy Keach as the wonderfully hateable Cameron Alexander. Keach, by the way, would have been the perfect choice to play Francis Dolarhyde in Manhunter, the film the precedes The Silence of the Lambs, but oh well.
Unfortunately, despite the fact that American History X is one of the best films in years, it is horribly underrated. Much like Norton's last film, Primal Fear, which was also a great movie, this movie did not get nearly the recognition that it deserves.
291 out of 470 people found the following review useful:
Best movie of 1998, 1 March 1999
Author: Doug Galecawitz (firstname.lastname@example.org) from Darien, Il
Powerful portrayal of Neo-Nazi movement in America. Told in series of flashbacks. Flawless acting by Edward Norton. Does its best to make the point that no one is ever right aand no one is ever wrong. I have a friend who was a Nazi and a racist. But upon walking out of the theater after this movie he hung his head in shame. This is why the film industry began.
120 out of 133 people found the following review useful:
A masterpiece! Truly one of the best film I have ever seen, 26 January 2006
Author: exa56 from Canada
I have been wanting to see this movie for a long time, since my English teacher mentioned it in our class in grade ten. Gosh I wished I wouldn't have waited all this time to finally watch it, although maybe it's a good thing cause I would have probably been a little bit more traumatized at 14... This movie is exceptional!!! Makes u think, makes you frustrated, makes you wanna scream and even makes you cry! Edward Norton is just phenomenal playing the role of a freak skin head and even more so playing this skin head who finally realizes how stupid he was and tries to protect his younger brother. Edward Furlong also does an amazing job!!! This film is moving in so many ways...I can't even describe how real and heartfelt it felt. I definitely think Edward Norton should have won the Oscar for his performance, cause he was absolutely terrific! I can't get why they didn't gave it to him... This movie will surely stay on my mind for a while now... just thinking that some place in the world things like that still happen...it crushes my heart. This is a wonderful movie that every single person should see at least once in his life... Watch American History X, it totally worth it!
98 out of 106 people found the following review useful:
This is a fantastic movie...., 7 January 2006
Author: jmchnwth from United States
This is a fantastic movie because no matter what side you're on in life, this movie shows them all, good and bad, right or wrong. I also agree with the point in the movie that proves that people can change for the better and straighten things out in their head to do the right things in life. Yes, things in our world have changed, some for the good, some for the bad, but just because you might not agree with some of it, doesn't mean you can play God and try to make things "your way" and this shows exactly what happens when you try. This movie talks about all walks of life and the struggles we all have in what beliefs are right and wrong. Yes this movie is brutal and violent, but also truthful to the past and unfortunately still sometimes the present. This movie is about race, but not only 1 race is singled out and fed to the dogs, they all are. So, go into this movie with an open mind and your mind will come out full.
159 out of 245 people found the following review useful:
American Neo-Nazi gets a wake-up call, 7 November 2001
Author: vanillabeach (email@example.com) from UK
Edward Norton plays Derek Vinyard, a violent but also intelligent
neo-nazi. After brutally killing two black people who tried to break
into his car, Derek is sent down for a couple of years. Meanwhile, his
younger brother Danny (Edward Furlong) is busy following in his
brother's footsteps. After certain incidents in prison gives him time
to thing, Derek decides to reform on his way out. Once out, he realises
how quickly in number his old gang of nazi thugs has grown and wonders
if he can save his brother.
This is a brilliant film. Perhaps what disturbs me the most is the way that Edward Norton looks so brutal, yet sounds so intellectual throughout the film.
Although the film contains a constant strong theme of violence, it is always justified in portraying a picture of racial tension. Neither black nor white people are "judged" in the film, it's primary focus being to outline that it's people's brutality that causes a racial divide, not race itself.
163 out of 262 people found the following review useful:
Controversial, yet very amazing & moving film, 19 April 2000
Author: John Christopher Pantalone (firstname.lastname@example.org) from Canfield, OH
When I first heard of "American History X," I thought it was going to be "just another movie." Man, was I wrong! The first time I watched it, I sat there as it ended, and I was just completely in a state of shock. This movie, more than any other movie I had seen on the subject of racism, really made me think twice about how I treated people of a different race. The way that Derek Vinyard's family was almost completely split apart and destroyed due to his racist beliefs should be a wake-up call to those people who have any racist beliefs whatsoever. I believe that this movie was a whole lot more than just a ground-breaking, controversial drama; it was a portrayal of exactly how much damage can be done to a family and a nation simply because of the hate for a person or people of a different color, for almost no reason at all. The Bible says that "God created man in his own image." It also says to, "Love your neighbor as yourself," which, right there, implies that racism is not something people should even consider. I wouldn't recommend that anyone under the age of 16 see this movie due to its graphic content and language; however, I believe that everyone who is over the age of 16, should see this movie at least once. This way, more people will get a chance to see the true consequences of racism, and how it can easily tear apart a family.
95 out of 162 people found the following review useful:
Intelligent Drama, 28 September 2004
Author: gingerkris (email@example.com) from London, England
Strong performances by Edward Norton & Edward Furlong really make this film for me. The direction by Tony Kaye with his mixture of black & white history contrasting with colourful reality is magic to absorb and shows this film up to be what it is – a true American Classic, ironically by a British director. The film itself is about two brothers, Derek the elder and Danny the younger adoring sibling. Derek has been in jail for three years after killing a black youth who tried to rob the family; the nature & brutality of the crime still shocks me to this day. AHX tracks Derek's history through the first formation of racist sentiment laid down by the father. These feeling of hate are embedded when later his father is killed in the line of duty. Derek becomes involved in the local Nazi movement, his intellect turned by youthful rage into hate crimes and the rational that comes with Neo Nazi propaganda. The Nazi-tattoo sporting, egotistical, philosophical younger Derek is a steam train waiting to crash, his propulsion to stardom is eventually embodied when he takes the life of the young thief, the scene is very apt as he calmly lies down and knows he will be a hero to his friends. Without wanting to spoil the film Derek encounters change in the prison, he meets a black man whom he works with and faces his own demons inside, I will leave it there for those who want to be moved by his transformation. Anyway, he comes out a new man and only wants to be that new person, which means leaving the old crowd, leaving the Anti-Jewish sepal he's been living with so long. The problem lies with his brother who has become a little Derek, getting drunk and being influenced like he was. Derek's cross to bear is that he can't change his life without his brother coming with him and being on the right side of humanity. I think that this film is less about race and more about our ability to change as individuals, the fact that we can become what and who we want is a gift. Derek becomes the man he always wanted to be, he only wants the same for his brother. Kaye's use of black & white creates an atmospheric drama that builds tension and has you feeling like a stung out piece of drum leather by mid movie. I love the way that Kaye subtly uses quotes and intellectualises the Nazi Stance, only to watch it being broken down by the same man (Derek / Norton). Norton is a joy to watch as is Gould and Furlong. To sum up American History X is a powerful intelligent drama, which provides plenty of discussion after the movie. This film should be on every high school curriculum…
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