“This film tells the story of the first director of the FBI, who remained head of the organisation until his death in 1972. The movie adopts two visual styles. There’s the backlot look used to reenact great moments in J. Edgar Hoover’s life, like the shooting of John Dillinger in front of the Biograph Theatre in Chicago and Hoover’s first arrest. Then there’s the documentary look: Hoover in the FBI building; that’s the real FBI building. Hoover in the apartment of his lifelong friend Lionel McCoy; that’s the real McCoy’s apartment” (Larry Cohen).