• Released
  • September 24, 2010
  • R , 2 hr 16 min
  • Documentary
    Drama
  • 36 Fan Ratings
Synopsis: The impact of Allen Ginsberg's landmark poem unfolds, as a court battle wages to ban the book.

Movie Reviews

Critic Ratings

63
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75

New York Post

By Lou Lumenick
This multi-pronged labor of love doesn't always work, but it often does, sometimes in ways that take your breath away.
Full Review
75

Washington Post

By Ann Hornaday
Howl mixes a number of story lines and aesthetic approaches: We get glimpses of Ginsberg's early days as a poet, including his...
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75

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
One of the qualities I like about this film is that the writer-directors, Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, are aware of the time when Beat...
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75

NPR

By Scott Tobias
Epstein and Friedman's doc-like approach also results in a certain dramatic stasis; Howl is a film aimed more for the head than the gut.
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70

Movieline

By Michelle Orange
The result is more fancy than funky, but the directors' aim is true and occasionally hits its mark.
Full Review
70

The Hollywood Reporter

By Kirk Honeycutt
What's cinematic experimentation without a few failures in the lab? Maybe that's why Howl is so appealing: The filmmakers don't get...
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63

Chicago Tribune

By Michael Phillips
It's well-crafted, but I wish the film showed us an additional dimension or two of the central figure, who once said the great challenge in...
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60

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
A movie with no clear narrative. It pushes boundaries and feels like one man's fever dream. But all those traits would certainly make Allen...
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50

Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
Well intentioned on every level, the movie is successful only on some, and it falls flat when trying to visualize the innards of the poem...
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50

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
The result is a film of passion and ambition, but one whose success is intermittent at best.
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More Info

Rated R | For Strong sexual content including language and images, and for some drug material