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Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins (2019)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 6 September 2019 (USA)
2:38 | Trailer
RAISE HELL: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins tells the story of media firebrand Molly Ivins, six feet of Texas trouble who took on the Good Old Boy corruption wherever she found it. Her ... See full summary »


Janice Engel


Janice Engel, Monique Zavistovski (Writer)
4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Ben Barnes ... Self
Paul Begala ... Self
Pat Buchanan ... Self (archive footage)
George W. Bush ... Self (archive footage)
Laura Bush ... Self (archive footage)
Carlton Carl ... Self
Don Carleton Don Carleton ... Self
Marcia Wigby Carter Marcia Wigby Carter ... Self
Bill Clinton ... Self (archive footage)
Bruce Collins Bruce Collins ... Self (archive footage)
Harold Cook ... Self - Political Commentator
Debra Danburg Debra Danburg ... Self
Lou Dubose ... Self
Ronnie Dugger ... Self
Marg Elliston Marg Elliston ... Self


RAISE HELL: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins tells the story of media firebrand Molly Ivins, six feet of Texas trouble who took on the Good Old Boy corruption wherever she found it. Her razor sharp wit left both sides of the aisle laughing, and craving ink in her columns. She knew the Bill of Rights was in peril, and said "Polarizing people is a good way to win an election and a good way to wreck a country." Molly's words have proved prescient. Now it's up to us to raise hell.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Her Pen Was Mightier Than Her Politics




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Molly Ivins: I do think that those of us who care about you know, such ephemera as the Bill of Rights, um, it's a good time to dig in. It's a good time to talk loud. It's a good time to remember a few things about how to fight these sorry bastards. Patriotic bullies back in World War I used to run around kicking dachshunds on the grounds that they were German dogs. Now, I'll tell you something about people like that: they don't go around kicking German Shepherds.
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References The Front Page (1931) See more »

User Reviews

Marvelous Molly
30 August 2019 | by ferguson-6See all my reviews

Greetings again from the darkness. We can't help but be drawn to that rare breed who possess a perfect blend of intelligence, humor, wit, and communication skills (whether written or oral). These people tend to make us laugh while they educate us and motivate us to think. Documentarian Janice Engel delivers a fascinating look at a fascinating woman, Molly Ivins.

With a subject like Molly Ivins, there is no question the time spent watching this will be entertaining; however, Ms. Engel doesn't miss an opportunity to dig a little deeper. Of course we see many archival clips of Molly delivering her own expertly chosen words - typically at the expense of some conservative politician, and we also are treated to personal insights from her siblings, as well as a couple of childhood/lifelong friends.

A traditional timeline is used for this anything-but-traditional woman. She stood 6 feet tall at age 12, and even as an adult she was a physically imposing presence in an occupation where women were still battling for acceptance. Her dad was a right-winger and she was a 3rd generation Smith College graduate, yet Molly remained an independent and (very) critical thinker ... delighting in exposing political corruption and incompetence. Her favorite punchlines typically skewered Texas politics and Texas politicians. A Master's degree from Columbia finalized her educational pedigree, but it was her colorful writing style that elevated her observations to a level of brilliance.

Molly Ivins once described the idea of objective reporting as "horse pucky". It's this type of honesty and straight talk that set her apart from so many reporters - both in her day, and even more so today. She knew and admitted that her own political views affected what she wrote, yet readers from both sides lapped up anything she committed to the page. That's not to say she didn't ruffle feathers. In fact, her feather-ruffling was world class. During her career, she held newspaper gigs in Minnesota, Austin, New York, Denver, and Dallas ... including The New York Times and The Texas Observer. Her column peaked when she was syndicated in more than 400 papers nationally. Molly Ivins was a big deal.

Others interviewed include Rachel Maddow, Dan Rather, Paul Krugman, and Ann Richards' daughter Cecile. Everyone loves to talk about a woman who brings a 6-pack of beer to a job interview, and referred to herself as the "resident communist". She admitted to being an alcoholic, and to being lonely at times; but the one thing she never did was sacrifice the work for personal gain. She wrote best-selling books, was a fabulous public speaker, appeared on TV and radio talk shows, and of course, spread her words on the page.

Molly Ivins was a wizard of words. She had much to say and many of us paid attention - whether we agreed or not. Her exceptionally strong and aggressive attacks on George W Bush might be what she is best remembered for, but "gang-pluck" may be a close second. Mostly we admire the tenacity and wit and genius that was the one and only Molly Ivins.

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Release Date:

6 September 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$94,504, 1 September 2019

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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