Toback has taken a distinctly '60s-ish personal experience and done his best to transplant it into the current, vastly different, cultural milieu. Harvard Man is a semi-throwback, a reminiscence without nostalgia or sentimentality.
The film suffers from clunky smart-aleck dialogue and an overabundance of jump cuts and crane shots, and despite its libertine air, Toback repeatedly cautions that acid is a fast track to insanity, especially in combination with Heidegger and Wittgenstein.
Jack MathewsNew York Daily News
Sillier than it is clever, and Toback's self-indulgence is tiresome. He's a genuine auteur, all right, but his life and the funky tastes that inspire him are just not as interesting as he thinks they are.
Sure, sex and drugs can take you to a higher plane. But not if a movie crushes your will to live first.
Michael AtkinsonVillage Voice
Obsessives can be seductive, and Toback is interesting for the same reasons his films are often unendurable: He's not an artist so much as a giant pop-cult testicle pumping absurd energy in a rampaging, self-justifying gout.