is actually one of my favorite movies. Ever since the first time I saw it, I have viewed the entire thing as a parody and a body slam to the government. (If you haven't seen this movie, stop now. The rest of this is spoilers.)
The first scene in the movie shows us the U.S. Secret Service using a gross excess of force to raid the home of an eleven year old. The virus which the lead character (Zero Cool) unleashed to crash 1507 systems in one day sounds suspiciously like a reference to the Great Worm of 1988 written by Robert Morris Jr..
One of the next scenes goes something like this:
Mother: "Dade? What are you doing?"
Dade: "I'm...uh...taking over a TV network."
Mother: "Well finish up honey and go to bed. Oh, and happy birthday."
In that same scene is a bunch of incoherent drivel written in gratuitously and purposefully bad English grammar, which reminded me of almost every lamer and script kiddie I've run into. (e.g. "u have tread on my domain and must now suffer who are u?" and "leave B 4 U R expunged") I don't know whether to find that insulting, stupid, or funny.
Then he hacks the sprinkler system in the school and sets it to test during morning classes to get back at the people who embarassed him the day before. This is obviously intended as a relation to the fiasco regarding the grading system in the New York Public School System in the late 1980s.
Meanwhile, the head Secret Service guy, Richard Gill (he's a dick, get it?), is busy trying to get every bit of media attention he can. He doesn't know anything about computers, but tries to act like he's very clueful when confronted by a reporter. He rattles off the same speech again and again, every time the media interviews him. The media, of course, swallows it up without question. Sounds like the real U.S. Government and media.
The writer also made it a point to note that when the U.S. Government suspects someone, even if they don't charge them, they take their equipment and basically destroy it. You may or may not get it back later, but when you do, it's been gutted, wrecked, and probably has D.A.R.E. stickers all over it.
Of course, the movie was undoubtably cheezy. I'd like to see a movie which slams the government, slams the average clueless idiot, and so on. Unfortunately, that wouldn't sell, so it will never be done.
Nevertheless, Hackers is a blatently hilarious movie that I highly recommend for those of us who have a clue. The clueless might watch it and be entertained, but the majority of the jokes and metaphors require a clue to recognize. That assumes that I'm not watching some blatently horrible film where the writer just happened to get lucky. I think it's more likely that either the writer was trying to make a point, or they had a technical consultant who took them for a ride.
The music isn't that bad either. I just wish I could find the song they were using in the movie trailers/promotions. I can think of a few fun things to do with it, a few other parts, and a video editor. And the soundtrack unfortunately didn't include all the songs in the movie, such as Grand Central Station which is the theme during the last part of the credits and during the hack of the Gibson.