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Straight Time

By Marshall Fine

Straight Time is notable for one of Dustin Hoffman's best--and least-seen--performances, as a lifelong criminal who, as a parolee, struggles to go straight. But it's a losing battle right from the jump. In less than a week, he's had a scuffle with his parole officer (M. Emmet Walsh) and is on the dodge, looking for a score. But you know that this guy has only two directions he can go in life--and that's either back to prison or into an early grave. A startling depiction of a surprisingly likable sociopath, this Ulu Grosbard film is a dark meditation on one man's firm--if skewed--values and features Hoffman in a relentless, wiry portrayal. The rest of the cast is equally strong, including the always-reliable Harry Dean Stanton, then-newcomer Gary Busey, and an unknown Kathy Bates.

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FILM FACTS

Buy this VHS movie from Amazon.com! (Click here!)DVD unavailableSoundtrack unavailable at Amazon.com - try eBay (see links below)Rated RNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Ulu Grosbard

Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Theresa Russell, Harry Dean Stanton, Gary Busey, M. Emmet Walsh, Sandy Baron, Kathy Bates, Rita Taggart

Released: March 18, 1978

Availability: VHS


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