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A Decade Under the Influence (2003)

A documentary examining the decade of the 1970s as a turning point in American cinema. Some of today's best filmmakers interview the influential directors of that time.

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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Credited cast:
Himself (archive footage)
Herself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
Marshall Brickman ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)


The 1970s was an extraordinary time of rebellion, of questioning every accepted idea: political activism, hedonism, protests, the sexual revolution, the women's movement, the civil rights movement, the music revolution, rage and liberation. Every standard by which we set our social and cultural clocks was either turned inside out or thrown away completely and reinvented. For American cinema, the 1970s was an era during which a new generation of filmmakers created work for a new kind of audience--moviegoers who were hungry for stories that reflected their own experiences and who were turning their backs on aged old studio formulas. As a result, emerging filmmakers influenced by foreign directors such as Godard, Kurosawa and Fellini coupled with the social climate and a struggling studio system, converged to create a new kind of moviemaking. Through their choice of material, filmmakers such as Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Robert Altman, Peter Bogdanovich, William Friedkin, ... Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, and images of sexuality, violence and drug use | See all certifications »




Release Date:

19 January 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Década que Mudou o Cinema  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$2,320 (USA) (25 April 2003)


$34,514 (USA) (20 June 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| | (DVD) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Director Ted Demme's last film See more »


References Bananas (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

Terrific movie
26 June 2008 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

What a wonderful documentary - I sat down thinking this would be a rehash of the bitchy stories told in Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, but it is, in fact, a clear-eyed, glorious celebration of a strange and twisted era that spawned some truly great movies. What struck me was the lack of bitterness apparent in the director interviews, given that now the movie business sucks in a large fashion - instead, folk like Friedkin and Coppola's eyes seem to positively glitter recalling their glory days. The footage of an audience coming out of a daytime screening of the Exorcist was priceless. 'It was - traumatic,' one guy says. A great epitaph for the late Ted Demme, a thrilling film, I just wish it was longer - I could have sat through a three hour cut of this.

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