The 5: Films Tough on Hollywood

This Week on The 5:  When Hollywood Takes a Closer Look at Hollywood

We love movies about Hollywood.  You get to look at the  movie within the movie and see how Hollywood sees itself.  A lot of movies have made the attempt to self reflect, but not all of them are great to watch. Here are 5 that we love.

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  • The Player (1992) Directed by Robert Altman.  Tim Robbins stars as Griffin Mill, a sleazy studio executive who is getting poison pen notes from a disgruntled writer. It is a critique of agents executives and Hollywood putting money over art. Altman got over 60 celebrities to play themselves and the film is full of inside jokes. Plus there’s a great twist ending and plenty of laughs. The opening shot is one of the greatest in film history lasting a full 7 minutes and 47 seconds without a camera break.
  • S.O.B. (1981) Directed by Blake Edwards.  S.O.B. parallels the experiences of Blake Edwards and his wife Julie Andrews in their infamous film, Darling Lili. The character based on Edwards is Felix Farmer a producer who becomes suicidal after his film flops.  He decides to reshoot the film as soft core porn with his family friendly star (Julie Andrews) showing her tits. The film features transvestite studio heads, backstabbing gossip columnists, pills, orgies and most of all — Julie Andrews tits.
  • Adaptation (2002) Directed by Spike Jones.  This Charlie Kaufman screen play stars Nicholas Cage as Charlie Kaufman a screenwriter who aims to make a film that doesn’t have all the Hollywood cliches and of course Adaptation is using those same cliches to build its story as it makes fun of it. Once again Hollywood gets put through the ringer, but this time so does the artist. Ready to compromise ready to adapt for success.
  • The Front (1976) Directed by Martin Ritt.  Even though this film is based in New York it focuses on the Hollywood Blacklist. On the Blacklist were writers, directors, actors and others kept from working because they were thought to be communists. Hollywood studios rolled over for the Washington witch hunt and it will forever be a black mark on Hollywood.  In this film Woody Allen plays restaurant cashier and small-time bookie who hands in TV and film scripts by blacklisted writers and collects the money that he funnels back to them. The Film was written by, directed by and stars many blacklisted artists from the era.
  • Barton Fink (1991) Directed by Joel Cohen.  John Turturro plays Barton Fink,  a New York intellectual playwright who comes to Hollywood to write a Wallace Beery wrestling film.  He finds Hollywood overwhelming and feels as that he is quickly losing touch with the “common man” He immediately gets a severe case of writers block and Hollywood seems to be turning into a ring of Hell for him.  John Goodman as the Fink’s  neighbor and Micheal Lerner as Capitol Pictures boss Jack Lipnick give amazing performances.


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The Player






The Front


Barton Fink

Bob08857 3 Like

"Swimming With Sharks" should definately be on the list.  Also "I'll Do Anything".

LizSetsFire 2 Like

No more wire hangers ever!! Mommie dearest.

LizSetsFire 3 Like

Does porn business count? Boogie nights would have to make it.

DerekJamesSmith 1 Like

Swimming with sharks should be on this list at the expense of SOB


What about South Park Movie, It attacks the MPAA

Franklin97 1 Like

I thought Get Shorty was funny b/c all of the Hollywood characters were as corrupt as the mob characters.

Nice Guy Eddie
Nice Guy Eddie 1 Like

Great list, I would also add Mulholland Drive by David Lynch which is a very bizarre critique of Hollywood.