Metascore
55

Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
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  1. Hugh Hefner has earned the gift of a fawning, non-confrontational greatest hits package and that's exactly what he's received, even if it's not what we necessarily wanted. As such, this will only preach to the converted (and maybe the perverted) and is best suited to DVD or cable.
  2. 50
    One wants to find enlightenment - or at least entertainment - in this reconsideration of Playboy and of Hefner. But it's tainted.
  3. The title – Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel – is fine as far as it goes. But if you leave out "octogenarian mammophile" and "calendar fetishist," you leave something essential out of the story.
  4. Reviewed by: Rob Nelson
    50
    This fawning docu goes to lengths to portray the octogenarian Playboy magazine founder as among the greatest figures of 20th-century American popular culture, while only cursorily acknowledging his status as a pioneering softcore pornographer.
  5. 50
    At 84 he describes himself as being kept alive by young women's laughter and infernal baby-talk, marking off perhaps his final, groaning aspirational standard. Almost makes me feel sorry for those men still trying to keep up.
  6. 50
    A very mixed bag. Despite some faint gestures in the direction of journalistic balance, it plays a lot like a two-hour infomercial for the Playboy publisher's historical importance, philosophical depth and personal greatness.
  7. 50
    Playboy "gave us some of the best literature of our time," opines noted literary critic Tony Bennett, among a cast of mostly ridiculous and redundant talking heads.
  8. If any life story should make for a compelling biography, it's certainly Hugh Hefner's. Unfortunately, this love letter is so lacking in any edge, the end result is not just unsexy but unforgivably staid.
  9. A proper profile of Hefner would start and end with sex, and not merely glance on casualties like Dorothy Stratten (and even the loveless Hef himself). The movie can't seem to get it up.

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