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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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Release Date:

14 September 2012 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


Philip Baker Hall also played Judge Hoffman in a 1979 Chicago stage production titled "The Chicago Conspiracy Trial". See more »


Abbie Hoffman: [speaking Yiddish to the judge] You are a disgrace in front of the gentiles.
See more »


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

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User Reviews

Bad film making
23 October 2013 | by See all my reviews

I don't know how true this movie is to the events of the trial. I do know that this is badly made by Pinchas Perry. The trial may be significant and the events important. But that just means that this subject should be done by someone much better skilled. Although the story is compelling enough to watch. By no means did I finish the film for its artistry.

In a rare instant, Philip Baker Hall overacts as an angry frustrated judge. Even if they're operating from the actual transcripts, I doubt that the judge would be raving like a rabid dog. And even if he was a rabid dog, it plays like overacting on the screen. It's a rare moment when I dislike PBH's acting. This movie is that rare moment.

The whole thing is a diatribe against the government prosecution. But it rarely gives any credence to the other side. If anything, the jury is treated like idiots who just want to go home. If they ease up, they could actually create compelling characters.

The trial has all the best scenes. Most everything else is weak. It should enlighten the audience to the times, but it does little more than stereotypes and stock news footage. The film should restrict itself to the trial until they could figure out how to make a movie.

And the split screen style is a big fail. It puts a big sign pointing to how the director has no idea how to cut a movie to maximize tension. It's a gimmick that doesn't fit and makes no sense here.

The last third lost it energizer bunny, Bobby Seale. The energy is noticeably diminished, and the movie desperately wants to have a scene with Bobby Seale in that section. Instead of a compelling climax, it fizzles in a haze of political preaching.

I'm barely recommending this only for people to learn something and hopefully do their own research on that era.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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