Television release poster
|Directed by||Greg Mottola|
|Produced by||Bradley Thomas
|Written by||Larry David
Philip Baker Hall
J. B. Smoove
|Music by||Ludovic Bource|
|Editing by||Steven Rasch|
|Production company||HBO Films|
|Running time||100 minutes|
Clear History is an American HBO comedy film written by Larry David, Alec Berg, David Mandel and Jeff Schaffer, directed by Greg Mottola and starring Larry David, Bill Hader, Philip Baker Hall, Jon Hamm, Kate Hudson, Michael Keaton, Danny McBride, Eva Mendes, Amy Ryan and J. B. Smoove. The film was released on August 10, 2013.
Nathan Flomm, in order to avoid the humiliation of having missed out on a hugely successful business, assumes a new identity on Martha's Vineyard. He plots revenge when his former business partner moves to the same town.
- Larry David as Nathan Flomm, a disgraced former marketing executive, now living alone under the name Rolly DaVore
- Bill Hader as Rags, Stumpo's friend and henchman
- Philip Baker Hall as McKenzie, a foreman
- Jon Hamm as Will Haney, Flomm's former boss
- Kate Hudson as Rhonda Haney, Will's wife
- Michael Keaton as Joe Stumpo, a quarry operator
- Danny McBride as Frank, Flomm's best friend
- Eva Mendes as Jennifer
- Amy Ryan as Wendy, Flomm's ex-girlfriend
- J. B. Smoove as Jaspar
- Liev Schreiber as Tibor. Schreiber's appearance remains uncredited due to his involvement in Ray Donovan, broadcast by HBO's rival network Showtime.
Members of the rock band Chicago appear as themselves.
The film began principal photography in July 2012. The film was shot on location in the Massachusetts towns of Topsfield, Essex, North Andover, and Beverly, including the North Shore Music Theatre. Around 300 full-time workers were needed on-set.
Clear History has received mixed to positive reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 52% based on 21 reviews, with an average rating of 6.6/10. Another review aggregation website Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 top reviews from mainstream critics, calculated a score of 69 based on 17 reviews.
Linda Stasi of the New York Post gave the film three and a half stars out of four, saying "Clear History is so funny it made me want to order up some Palestinian chicken." Brian Lowry of Variety gave the film a negative review, saying "It's hard to fault HBO for letting him indulge in this flight of fancy, particularly given all the marquee names he attracts. Still, without an ability to focus those appetites, Clear History yields the occasional chuckle, but somewhat curbed enthusiasm." David Hiltbrand of The Philadelphia Inquirer gave the film a negative review, saying "Despite a number of funny lines sprinkled through the script, this History isn't very memorable." Matthew Gilbert of The Boston Globe gave the film a negative review, saying "Even if you do like David’s shtick, as I do, you have no business here. The movie plays out something like an extra-long but subpar episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Many fans are hungering for a new season of “Curb,” which last aired in 2011. Don’t expect “Clear History” to fill the void." Allison Keene of The Hollywood Reporter gave the film a positive review, saying "With its seaside setting and lighthearted fun, Clear History is a kind of pleasant, late-summer gazpacho, enjoyed to the sounds of Chicago and debates about whether there is a racial preference between black and white dwarves. That last part should prove that while Larry David might look and feel a little different in this project, he could never be mistaken, like Flomm is, for anyone else."
Robert Lloyd of the Los Angeles Times gave the film a positive review, saying "If it doesn't have quite the compressed power of a "Curb" episode, it's in part because we know Larry David in a way that we don't know Nathan Flomm (who may strike us here as a man doing an imitation of Larry David). Still, the comic TV movie has become a rare thing (if you factor out the Lifetime and Hallmark rom-coms); its return is welcome." Robert Bianco of USA Today gave the film a negative review, saying "If you're a fan of Curb Your Enthusiasm, think of this as an extended version of Curb. If you're not, History will not convert you." Hank Stuever of The Washington Post gave the film a positive review, saying "It has a nice, confident and well-edited breeze to it (including a lot of jokes about the band Chicago), with a fun cast that includes standout riffs from Michael Keaton, Danny McBride and Eva Mendes." Laura Bennett of The New Republic gave the film a negative review, saying "Clear History was improvised from 35 pages of script. "You are such an asshole!" one Vineyard resident tells Flomm, which is the movie's main revelation." David Wiegand of the San Francisco Chronicle gave the film three out of four stars, saying "It will take only a few minutes of Clear History... not only to "forgive" David for repeating himself but to thank him for reminding us why we miss Curb Your Enthusiasm and hope it comes back soon."
Clear History was released on DVD and Blu-ray, on November 5, 2013.
- Siegel, Tatiana (September 13, 2012). "Larry David Firms Up Cast for HBO Movie". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
- Patten, Dominic (June 6, 2013). "HBO Ends ‘Eastbound & Down’ With Season 4; ‘Boardwalk Empire’, Larry David’s ‘Clear History’ & ‘Hello Ladies’ Premieres Set". Deadline.com. Retrieved June 10, 2013.
- "Making ‘Clear History’ in the North region". The Boston Globe. October 11, 2012. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
- Rosenberg, Steven A. (October 11, 2012). "Larry David brings all-star cast to North Shore". The Boston Globe. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
- Shanahan, Mark (November 6, 2012). "Susanna Hoffs spotted hanging out in Natick". The Boston Globe. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
- "Clear History". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- "Clear History - Season 1 Reviews". Metacritic. 2013-08-05. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- Stasi, Linda (2013-07-31). "'Clear History' has a funny bone to pick". NYPOST.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- Goldblatt, Daniel (2013-08-07). "“Clear History” Review HBO". Variety. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- David Hiltbrand, Inquirer TV Critic (2012-10-22). "Weekend cable lineup includes a new comedy, royal court and crime". Philly.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- Gilbert, Matthew. "‘Clear History’: Larry David’s overwhelming Larry Davidness - Television". Boston.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- "Clear History: TV Review". The Hollywood Reporter. 2011-11-17. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- Lloyd, Robert. "Review: Larry David's 'Clear History' showcases some 'Curb' control". latimes.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
- Robert Bianco, USA TODAY (2013-08-09). "Weekend TV: 'The White Queen,' 'Clear History'". Usatoday.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- Hank Stuever. "HBO’s ‘Clear History’: Larry David, slightly restrained". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- Bennett, Laura. "'Clear History' Review: Larry David Plays Himself, Again". New Republic. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- David Wiegand (2013-08-07). "'Clear History' review: Larry David plays to type". SFGate. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "Clear History Blu-ray". Blu-ray.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.