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The Hoax | 2007 | R | - 6.4.7

Richard Gere stars as Clifford Irving, the writer who penned a controversial autobiography of Howard Hughes during the mid-1970s. Irving claimed the book was based on interviews with the reclusive billionaire, but it was soon revealed that it was all a scam, and Hughes was never interviewed. Based on actual events. Also with Alfred Molina, Marcia Gay Harden, Julie Delpy and Hope Davis. Directed by Lasse Hallstrom. [1:55]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - A woman in bed is wearing a sheer, low-cut nightgown, which reveals cleavage, and talks to a man seated at the foot of the bed while he dresses (it is implied that they have had sex); when she climbs out of bed her nightgown opens to reveal her bare breasts.
 A woman lies in bed under sheets (her bare shoulders and cleavage are visible) and she talks to a man on the telephone asking to see him again (they have apparently had a sexual relationship and both are married to other people).
 Two men and two women talk and flirt in a bar, one of the women leaves a man's room in the morning and he comes out of the room wearing underwear (it is implied that they have had sex).
 A husband and wife kiss in a few scenes.
 A husband confesses to his wife that he had an affair with another woman. A man talks about another man's wife leaving him for a lesbian. It is implied that a man has paid a woman (she is referred to as a "hooker" later) to have sex with another man. A man talks about a children's book that he is writing, and that in order to be historically correct it would need to include the subject of sodomy.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - A man is grabbed by two men, struck, blindfolded, taken by plane somewhere where he is threatened and thrown over a balcony, and he falls several floors into a swimming pool (he is OK).
 A man is punched in the nose (we see blood). A woman yells at a man and throws a book at him (we see a bit of blood on his forehead).
 Two men panic and run through a building's stairwell. A husband confesses to his wife that he had an affair with another woman and she becomes enraged.
 There are a few scenes that show war protestors being harassed and arrested by police.
 A man vomits in an airsickness bag (we hear gagging). A man talks about a man drinking his own urine.


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LANGUAGE 7 - 28 F-words and its derivatives, 3 sexual references, 12 scatological terms, 8 anatomical terms, 10 mild obscenities, name-calling (crazy, idiot), 4 religious profanities, 11 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - A man takes prescription drugs. People drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes in many party and bar scenes throughout the movie. A woman smokes a cigarette.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Fraud, promises, forgery, justice, success, power, grand larceny, honor, corruption, conspiracy, presidential impeachment, failure, disappointment, infidelity, lying, eccentric behavior, Howard Hughes, bribery, plausibility, obsession, paranoia, sodomy, stealing secured documents, Richard Nixon, the Vietnam war, the Watergate break-in.

MESSAGE - Howard Hughes's desire to pull away from public scrutiny invited obsession and morbid interest.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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