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The Chicago 8 (2011)

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Based on actual court transcripts of 8 anti-war protesters on trial for conspiring to cause riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

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Based on actual court transcripts of 8 anti-war protesters on trial for conspiring to cause riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago. Written by Anonymous

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14 September 2012 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

At a certain point the character played by Steven Culp quotes Bobby Kennedy while addressing to the jury. Culp played Bobby years earlier in Thirteen Days (2000). See more »

Quotes

Abbie Hoffman: Sorry dad, I'm ready to go to jail.
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Connections

Referenced in Who Wants to Be a Millionaire: Episode #8.140 (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fantastic depiction of a decisive and glorious moment in time...
7 March 2014 | by (New England) – See all my reviews

The Chicago 8 is a marvelous and exciting evocation of the vivid, often violent clash of cultures which defined America in the mid-1960s. The war in Vietnam, now widely seen as a territory & resource grab by the imperialist American war machine, was the tipping point for many intelligent people with compassion: this latest exercise in genocide-for-profit was just too much for some to idly accept, and they responded. Sadly, they encountered an extraordinarily corrupt and prejudiced court system, which ruthlessly targeted and punished any free-thinking citizen who questioned the bloodthirsty antics of the military-industrial complex and it's government hand-maiden.

The infamous trial – and its astute evocation in the film - acted as lightning rod for all of the accrued and overlapping socio-political dichotomies in U.S. culture at the time: old vs. young, white vs. black, Wasp vs. Jew, hawk vs. dove, square vs. hippie, conservative vs. liberal, etc. These warring dichotomies are conveyed well here, via the characters, the script, plus the excellent use of split-screen, which always pits one of more battling factions against each other in stark relief. The film is rife with amazing portrayals of colorful bigger-than-life characters, with those of Allen Ginsberg and Phil Ochs two stand-outs. The only thing I would wish for is more Mayim Bialik, the coolest Yippie Jewess ever depicted on-screen.

The Chicago 8 vividly depicts a glorious moment in time, when (some) young people had vision, passion and courage - not like the apolitical video-game, corporate-zombie, war-monger goof-balls which pass for youth today. In fact, it seems the only "epic fail" here is that of the dullard audience, who can't see artistic excellence staring them in the face. Pearls before swine, I say. Read the other reviews of this film to see how far the movie-going audience has sunken in the past twenty years; the most hilarious one even wishes for the world's wealthiest hack - Steven Spielberg - to remake the story himself! Good god, these people actually plead for slick corporate crap over heartfelt indie filmmaking - case closed!


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