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1,866 Ratings


United States, 2010
Drama, Biography, LGBT+


Allen Ginsberg: the ultimate poet and counter-culture adventurer of the Beat Generation. In his famously confessional, leave-nothing-out style, he recounts the road trips, love affairs and search for liberation that led to his timeless, electrifying masterpiece “Howl.”

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Howl Directed by Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman

What are people saying?

  • smndvdcl's rating of the film Howl

    Wherever you stand on Ginsberg, whatever you think of Epstein's direction, however the film utilises sight/sound to convey this case, the significance of this true story regarding freedom of expression illustrates the ideological divide between conservative censorship wishing to ban certain speech, and the liberal whose emphasis on an open playing field (as long as mutual human rights are upheld) is profound.

  • Marina's rating of the film Howl

    Ginsberg is an inspiration to me and I couldn't praise more James Franco's performance. The mix between him reciting Howl, his story, the interview, the trial and the animation are strange at first but capture brillantly the vivacity and great genius of this man.

  • El Biffo's rating of the film Howl

    Franco channels Ginsberg amazingly. Very moving, however, I felt that the animation sequences detract from the power of Ginsberg's words. I closed my eyes during the animated sequences, and my mind produced images more profound and profane than the ones in the animation. I can get this same effect by reading Ginsberg's poetry and letting my mind make the pictures. Filming poetry is trickier than adapting a novel..

  • Bill Rosenfield's rating of the film Howl

    An amazing movie which respects the audience and illuminates another work of art. Terrific performances especially from James Franco. Easily one of the best pictures of the year.

  • mpho3's rating of the film Howl

    Howl probably doesn't work if you don't already know about the Beats. I read a lot of their work when I was younger and Collins & Skover's Mania this year. "What prophecy actually is is not knowing whether the bomb will fall in 1942. It's knowing and feeling something which someone knows and feels in a hundred years, and maybe articulating it in a hint that they will pick up on in a hundred years." Nice job, Franco!

  • analeorne's rating of the film Howl

    amazingly beautiful. Not only a great interpretation of Ginsberg's most well-known poem, the animation brings new life to one of the greatest masterpieces of the 20th century. James Franco's reading of Howl is flawless and if you're not already a fan of Beat poetry, you''ll at least become more curious about it.

  • Zac Weber's rating of the film Howl

    The mixture of media is engaging, even if the animation underwhelms at times. Franco is wonderful as the young Allen Ginsberg...

  • Ethan's rating of the film Howl

    It plays like a re-enacted documentary giving great insight inside the writer's mind and a great argument for art and why it shouldn't be censored or silenced.

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