Critic Reviews

55

Metascore

Based on 16 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
80
If your sole image of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner is that of a lanky, silk-jammied sybarite strolling the grounds of his mansion with a jiggling blond on either arm, Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel will knock your socks off.
75
Yet as ridiculous as Hefner's life sometimes seems, he has been an exemplary citizen, as this documentary by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Brigitte Berman spells out.
70
The Hollywood Reporter
The film is at its most potent delineating Hefner's role in the American civil rights movement, going beyond the pages of his magazine.
63
The Hefner we meet here is the likable rogue we already know.
60
Hugh Hefner has earned the gift of a fawning, non-confrontational greatest hits package and that's exactly what he's received, even if it's not what we necessarily wanted. As such, this will only preach to the converted (and maybe the perverted) and is best suited to DVD or cable.
50
One wants to find enlightenment - or at least entertainment - in this reconsideration of Playboy and of Hefner. But it's tainted.
50
At 84 he describes himself as being kept alive by young women's laughter and infernal baby-talk, marking off perhaps his final, groaning aspirational standard. Almost makes me feel sorry for those men still trying to keep up.
50
The title - Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel - is fine as far as it goes. But if you leave out "octogenarian mammophile" and "calendar fetishist," you leave something essential out of the story.
40
If any life story should make for a compelling biography, it's certainly Hugh Hefner's. Unfortunately, this love letter is so lacking in any edge, the end result is not just unsexy but unforgivably staid.
40
A proper profile of Hefner would start and end with sex, and not merely glance on casualties like Dorothy Stratten (and even the loveless Hef himself). The movie can't seem to get it up.

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