HACKERS Angelina Jolie

HACKERS. United Artists, 1995. Jonny Lee Miller, Angelina Jolie, Jesse Bradford, Matthew Lillard, Laurence Mason, Renoly Santiago, Fisher Stevens, Alberta Watson, Lorraine Bracco, Wendell Pierce. Director: Iain Softley.

   As a rule, and I don’t have too many rules, but Number Five is that I don’t review movies I don’t understand. But every Rule has an Exception, and so does Rule #5. Movies about computers, computer whizzes and computer geeks I don’t have to understand to review them. I can even enjoy them, but not always.

   Hackers is a movie that falls into the category of “I didn’t really understand the plot,” but I did enjoy it. A lot. The story deals with a worm and/or computer virus dreamed up by some slimy corporate security guy, but which a gang of high school hackers stumbles upon. And (with some travail but not too unexpectedly) they save the day.


   There is a lot of symbolic nonsense about what you see on the screen when someone is hacking, or at least I think it’s nonsense, but what do I know. Psychedelic images looking very electronic, in other words, but symbolic in the sense that it’s maybe what the hackers have in their brains while they are sitting at their computer screens typing madly away at the keyboard.

HACKERS Angelina Jolie

   The reason I could enjoy this one is that the gang of hackers, whose actions and life style may or may not be authentic, but which feels authentic, except for maybe the roller skates, is so much fun to watch – their competitiveness, their one-upmanship, and their comradery – along with a romance that begins with hatred at first sight.

   Or at least what feigns to be hatred at first sight, but these are teenagers, and their hormones are all mixed up.

   I’m speaking of Jonny Lee Miller (Eli Stone, to some of us) and Angelina Jolie (Lara Croft, to some other of us, with some overlap, I’m sure). Miss Jolie was all of 20 years old when she made this movie, and from the first moment she’s on the screen, you know that, yes, here is going to be star.

HACKERS Angelina Jolie

   The computer stuff was outdated even before they finishing filming this movie, so there’s no need to go into any of the details, even if I could (or even if I could fake it), and here it is, well over 15 years later already.

   You needn’t be for a minute concerned about that. If you watch movies for fun and entertainment, this is one for you. Even if you don’t understand what’s going on: the plot, that is – the unimportant, non-essential part. Rule #2: Know which is which.

HACKERS Angelina Jolie