Top 5000
Up 363 this week

J. Edgar (2011)

R  |   |  Biography, Crime, Drama  |  11 November 2011 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.6/10 from 95,313 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 272 user | 385 critic | 42 from

J. Edgar Hoover, powerful head of the F.B.I. for nearly 50 years, looks back on his professional and personal life.


Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

10 Best Action Heroes

We consulted IMDb's Highest-Rated Action-Family Films to came up with 10 scene-stealing action figures your kids can relate to, look up to, and be inspired by.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

Related News

Naomi Watts Is In "Vogue"
| SneakPeek
Naomi Watts In "Vogue"
| SneakPeek

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 21 titles
created 07 Dec 2011
a list of 22 titles
created 17 Dec 2011
a list of 22 titles
created 27 Dec 2011
a list of 36 titles
created 03 Jan 2012
a list of 36 titles
created 08 Jul 2013

Related Items

Search for "J. Edgar" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: J. Edgar (2011)

J. Edgar (2011) on IMDb 6.6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of J. Edgar.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Body of Lies (2008)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A CIA agent on the ground in Jordan hunts down a powerful terrorist leader while being caught between the unclear intentions of his American supervisors and Jordan Intelligence.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Russell Crowe, Mark Strong
The Aviator (2004)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A biopic depicting the early years of legendary director and aviator Howard Hughes' career, from the late 1920s to the mid-1940s.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett, Kate Beckinsale
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A young couple living in a Connecticut suburb during the mid-1950s struggle to come to terms with their personal problems while trying to raise their two children.

Director: Sam Mendes
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Christopher Fitzgerald
Blood Diamond (2006)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A fisherman, a smuggler, and a syndicate of businessmen match wits over the possession of a priceless diamond.

Director: Edward Zwick
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Djimon Hounsou, Jennifer Connelly
Crime | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1863, Amsterdam Vallon returns to the Five Points area of New York City seeking revenge against Bill the Butcher, his father's killer.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, Daniel Day-Lewis
The Beach I (2000)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Twenty-something Richard travels to Thailand and finds himself in possession of a strange map. Rumours state that it leads to a solitary beach paradise, a tropical bliss - excited and intrigued, he sets out to find it.

Director: Danny Boyle
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel York, Patcharawan Patarakijjanon
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A Midwestern war veteran finds himself drawn to the past and lifestyle of his millionaire neighbor.

Director: Baz Luhrmann
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The cruel King Louis XIV of France has a secret twin brother who he keeps imprisoned. Can the twin be substituted for the real king?

Director: Randall Wallace
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jeremy Irons, John Malkovich
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A true story about Frank Abagnale Jr., who, before his 19th birthday, successfully conned millions of dollars' worth of checks as a Pan Am pilot, doctor, and legal prosecutor.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Christopher Walken
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Film adaptation of street tough Jim Carroll's epistle about his kaleidoscopic free fall into the harrowing world of drug addiction. As a member of a seemingly unbeatable high school ... See full summary »

Director: Scott Kalvert
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Lorraine Bracco, Marilyn Sokol
Invictus (2009)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Nelson Mandela, in his first term as the South African President, initiates a unique venture to unite the apartheid-torn land: enlist the national rugby team on a mission to win the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon, Tony Kgoroge
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Shakespeare's famous play is updated to the hip modern suburb of Verona still retaining its original dialogue.

Director: Baz Luhrmann
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Claire Danes, John Leguizamo


Cast overview, first billed only:
Geoff Pierson ...
Cheryl Lawson ...
Palmer's Wife
Palmer's Daughter
Brady Matthews ...
Head Secretary
Edgar's Father
Hoover as a Child
Labor Dept. Lawyer


Biopic of J. Edgar Hoover told by Hoover as he recalls his career for a biography. Early in his career, Hoover fixated on Communists, anarchists and any other revolutionary taking action against the U.S. government. He slowly builds the agency's reputation, becoming the sole arbiter of who gets hired and fired. One of his hires is Clyde Tolson who is quickly promoted to Assistant Director and would be Hoover's confidant and companion for the rest of Hoover's life. Hoover's memories have him playing a greater role in the many high profile cases the FBI was involved in - the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, the arrest of bank robbers like John Dillinger - and also show him to be quite adept at manipulating the various politicians he's worked with over his career, thanks in large part to his secret files. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Most Powerful Man in the World


Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

11 November 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hoover  »

Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$11,217,324 (USA) (11 November 2011)


$37,304,950 (USA) (17 February 2012)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Claire Danes was considered for the role of Helen Gandy. See more »


When Edgar's mother teaches him to dance, she has her right hand on top of his left shoulder and he has his left hand in the small of her back, which is the mirror image of the standard dance hand positions. If she had been leading, her right hand would be in the small of his back, not on top of his shoulder. See more »


[first lines]
J. Edgar Hoover: Let me tell you something. The SCLC has direct Communist ties. Even great men can be corrupted, can't they? Communism is not a political party. It is a disease. It corrupts the soul, turning men, even the gentlest of men, into vicious evil tyrants.
See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.66 (2012) See more »


I Only Have Eyes for You
Written by Harry Warren and Al Dubin
Performed by Kyle Eastwood, Joe Bagg, Kye Palmer, Jason Harnell
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Great but not without its flaws
6 November 2011 | by (Vancouver) – See all my reviews

Just got back from a screening in Vancouver~ Thanks to Clint Eastwood, it was almost free (only one dollar per ticket) I will try to keep my review spoiler-free~

Personally, I thought it was a great film. Not exceptional in anyway, but still great. The tone reminds me a bit of Changeling. Makes sense since the stories are from the same period. I have to say, with Eastwood, Leonardo DiCaprio and Dustin Lance Black all on board, I was kind of expecting something a bit more than this.

I thought the weakest link was the script. It was interesting, but flawed. Also, the story was not very intriguing. Having watched Milk (also written by Black) and really liked how the story unfolded, I was expecting a great story about how J. Edgar Hoover rose to power and how he gradually transformed into the monster he became in the end. But instead, the story was told by shifting back and forth in time countless times, which at some point made me feel emotionally detached from the story and the characters. The bad bad makeup (I guess we can all agree on that~) was also very distracting. The elderly characters looked like wax figures to me.

That said, I really LOVED Eastwood's score. It was moving and really fit the mood of the film. His direction and camera-work were masterful as always. Leo was very convincing as J. Edgar, although I keep on seeing bits and pieces of Howard Hughes in his performance. Judi Dench and Naomi Watts were both great, however the same thing can not be said about Armie Hammer. I thought he was much better in The Social Network. There were a few good moments between him and Leo, but his performance as the elderly Clyde Tolson was darn right awful. I blame the horrible makeup.

As for the Oscars, this film will get a few nominations, but I doubt that it would become a strong contender. Though Leo's performance was not without its flaws, I thought it was more than enough to secure his leading actor nomination. Nods for best art direction, best cinematography and best score are also quite possible.

This film had the potential to become a masterpiece, but fell short of my expectations mainly due to the uneven script. While far from being one of his best, it is nevertheless a welcome addition to Eastwood's portfolio.


146 of 217 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Leo needs to break his habits.. bs-2010
Make up jaitee
I thought DiCaprio was in that movie? Tyrolean
Why was this rated R? emiller94
Deporting American Citizens giverny98
Why was Leonardo snubbed in the Oscars? EversonAngel
Discuss J. Edgar (2011) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: