Straight Time

Despite some signs of muddle and uncertainty (Ulu Grosbard replaced Dustin Hoffman as director during the shooting), this is a surprisingly strong picture about a convict (Hoffman) on parole in LA learning what the supposedly normal world is all about. Based on Edward Bunker’s novel No Beast So Fierce and adapted by several hands, this gains one’s respect largely through its secondary castTheresa Russell, Gary Busey, Harry Dean Stanton, M. Emmet Walsh, and Rita Taggartalthough Hoffman has his moments as well (1978). (JR)

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