This movie, based on the cult Broadway musical of the 60s, tells a story about Claude, a young man from Oklahoma who comes to New York City. There he strikes up a friendship with a group of hippies, led by Berger, and falls in love with Sheila, a girl from a rich family. However, their happiness is short because Claude must go to the Vietnam war.
John Savage ... Claude Hooper Bukowski
Treat Williams ... George Berger
Beverly D'Angelo ... Sheila Franklin
Annie Golden ... Jeannie Ryan
Dorsey Wright ... Lafayette aka Hud
Don Dacus ... Woof
Cheryl Barnes ... Hud's Fiancee
Richard Bright ... Fenton
Nicholas Ray ... The General
Charlotte Rae ... Lady in Pink
Miles Chapin ... Steve Franklin
Fern Tailer ... Sheila's Mother
Charles Denny ... Sheila's Father
Herman Meckler ... Sheila's Uncle
Agness Breen ... Sheila's Aunt
One night at home I had nothing to do, and I saw that Hair was on t.v. later. I was curious about it, I mean I had no idea what to expect. I had heard people make fun of it, and I had heard people praise it. So I had to watch, I had to have an opinion.
At the beginning of the film, I enjoyed The Age of Aquarius number, and was intrigued. However, when the number Hair came on, I didn't know how to react. I wanted to laugh at it and change the channel, I didn't want my siblings to make fun of me. Yet the song, though a little stupid, was also catchy. I kept watching. After I was finished watching the entire film, I had no idea what had just happened. I didn't know if I liked it or not, I did know that I wanted to see it again.
This is a strangely addicting film. I watched it three more times in the days following, and my final verdict is, I love it! I can't help it. It's just so fun! The fist time I watched it I was mocking it, but by the third time viewing it I was in anticipation over when the number Hair would come on so I could sing along. I especially loved the song, How Can People Be So Hard, it's a different pace from the majority of the film. What can I say, when it was over I was singing the songs in my head for weeks. I just have to buy it. I highly recommend this film to musical lovers (especially if you love musicals like The Who's Tommy). And although I know I would never be a hippie, this film makes me want to say "Heck with work, I'm going to grow out my hair so fleas can live in it!" Watch it, but beware, I think it just might do the same for you!!!
Now more than ever we need Peace & Love in this world!
This film really showcases the wonderful music of the Broadway show, and the fabulous Choreography of the legendary Twila Tharp! I saw it again after many years, and it still holds up well.
Thank you, MGM/UA for putting this on DVD! I love the option of seeing in Widescreen. MGM rocks for doing this on many of their DVD releases.
Ya gotta love Treat Williams as Berger and John Savage as Claude. They couldn't have picked better actors & actresses for this film! Beverly D'Angelo is such a 'hot mama' in this film--I had forgotten just how hot! WOW!
The supporting cast is absolutely great,
with the late great Nell Carter making a singing cameo in a couple of scenes, as well as the kooky Charlotte Ray (Mrs. Garrett on 'Facts Of Life')
The story gets a little weak toward the end, but the anti-war sentiment of the late 60's still holds up, and is relevant today.
It's beautifully filmed (quite a bit on location) and is so colorful and lovely and really brings the spirit of 1968 back on the big screen.
I saw this movie when it was released in 1979 when I was 15, and was moved by it then, and it still moves me now at 40. Some other reviews on here say they think it should have been made sooner--I don't think Hollywood was ready to make such a movie back in the late 60's-early 70's.
The Vietnam War ended in 1975, and the whole thing hit a little too close to home, I think for this story to be filmed before it was (like in 1969, 70, 71)
Bravo to Director Milos Foreman! I love this film!!!!!!!
The first time I ever saw this movie was when I was four years old. I don't really remember it, and I don't even know if I saw the whole thing... but I do remember that my favorite character was Woof. 13 years later, I am now 17, and decided to watch it about a month ago because I am taking a 1960's class in school. I didn't really know what to expect, since it had been 13 years since I last saw it, but I was completely blown away by it. The actors were amazing, the music was so fun, and I now find myself singing along to every song. Treat Williams is great as Berger, the "leader" of the hippie group, who always gets what he wants, one way or another (except for at the very end, of course). John Savage is actually very convincing as Claude, the Oklahoma draftee who falls in love with Sheila (Beverly D'Angelo). D'Angelo is lovely as the prim and proper rich girl who eventually rebels against her upbringing and joins the hippies. The other hippies are played by Annie Golden, Don Dacus, and Dorsey Wright. Annie Golden is just adorable as Jeannie, the girl who is pregnant but still as cute and innocent as a child. Don Dacus is awesome as Woof (he is still one of my favorites), and how can you not love his blonde hair? Dorsey Wright is good as the only black member of the group, and Cheryl Barnes, his fiancée, has an amazing voice.
The only problem I have with this movie, however, is that the relationship between Claude and Sheila is not very convincing. They are barely ever together, and when they are, they fight (remember the skinnydipping scene?). Their relationship is very weak, and by the end of the movie we are supposed to believe they are madly in love, only based on the few meetings they had. I also see that many people writing reviews here are upset by the PG rating this movie has. I personally would raise the rating up to a PG-13, only because there is some drug use... but remember in 1979, PG-13 didn't exist. I don't think the nudity is bad at all, it is in no way sexual (in fact, there isn't really any sex at all in this movie), and it is only to show the childlike innocence that the group maintains. In most European countries, nudity isn't regarded as something bad, and I don't see why it is here in the US. Anyways, I give this movie a 10/10 rating, and I'm glad it was made back then, because in the insanely "politically correct" world of today, they wouldn't even think of making it, and even if they did, it would be a very "watered down" version, and I'm sure you wouldn't get the full effect.
In conclusion, this is a very underrated film that is definitely worth checking out. It is my new favorite movie. :)
* Madonna and Bruce Springsteen auditioned for parts in the film.
* George Lucas was offered the chance to direct this movie in the early 1970s, but turned it down because he was developing American Graffiti (1973).
* Although the film is based on the theatrical stage musical as well as sharing some of the songs and character names, the two versions are drastically different in most respects including plot, which songs are sung, the order in which they are performed and which character performs them, and how the characters are portrayed.
* Betty Buckley's voice is used for the Vietnamese girl singing "Walking In Space."
* The words in the closing number, entitled 'The Flesh Failures', contain lines from William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. The words come from Romeo's death scene before drinking the poison. Phrases such as 'Eyes, Look your Last, Arms take your last embrace' and 'The lips, oh you the doors, of breath, sealed with a righteous kiss' are all from Romeo's final monologue.
* First Dolby Stereo film dubbed in a language other than English when released in Germany.