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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Hero (1992)



Reviews and Comments

Hero is a clever, funny comedy with food for thought. It's also bogged down by an excess of repetition and irrelevance. It's unfortunate to see a movie such as this; it's clear that a more ruthless job in the editing room would have made this a comedy classic. As it is, only patience is rewarded -- but rewarded well.

The premise? Dustin Hoffman plays a bum thief who, through freakish circumstance, becomes a hero. But the wrong man is credited with the deed, and Hoffman's character is unable to correct the error. What I admired most about Hero was that it resisted the temptation to make the false hero an unscrupulous rat. Is he any better or worse than anyone else? Do the ends justify the means? Does one mistake undo genuine heroism? Does genuine heroism undo one mistake? Any film that asks questions like these is worth seeing on that basis alone. Hero also has its humor and a fine performance by Hoffman to recommend it as well. If only it were a little tighter, it'd have been great instead of good.