Slacker (The Criterion Collection)
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Since then, Linklater has gone on to make a lot of little movies that really strike a chord with audiences ("Dazed and Confused," "School of Rock") while rarely straying far from his cerebral independent roots ("Waking Life," "Before Sunset"). Meanwhile "Slacker" just got the ultimate cineast validation - it's been released as a ritzy Criterion Collection two-disc DVD.
There's no real plot to the movie. A roving camera simply spends a day eavesdropping on more than 100 students, eccentrics, revolutionaries, thieves, artists, partygoers, nutjobs, et al. It drifts from one conversation to the next and all of them sound, well, like the musings of a brainy Texas movie buff. It's aged better than I thought it might -- I especially enjoyed the brief debate between two characters over the election results of then-Pres. George (H.W.) Bush.
It's rough, a little contrived, sometimes monotonous, basically a love-it-or-hate-it affair; and while I understand why it drives some viewers nuts, I'm firmly in the other camp. This is a film crammed with ideas and inspiration and a sense of life - three elements that rarely bump into one another in the same movie.
The double-disc set also includes a in-depth commentary by Linklater (plus tracks with cast and crew); Linklater's glacially-paced first feature; a rollicking super-8 short about the 1985 Woodshock music fest; a cast reunion and enough other extras to render viewers slack for days on end.
JFK-assassination "buff" remarks that he never knew about how much Jack Ruby loved his dogs (even taking one along when he went to shoot Lee Harvey Oswald); a girl tries to sell a bit of Madonna's, erm, medical material -- you'll just have to see it to find out what. Richard Linklater makes really great, brilliant, funny, bizarre, non-linear films, the kind we should be seeing a hell of a lot more of from our film industry, if only they could see past monstrous box-office takes or
gi-normous egos. Check it out, for sure. I like to watch it just to remember what Austin, and some of the people I used to know there, looked like -- pretty damn good, as a matter of fact.
"We've been on Mars since '62." Once you see the movie for, like, the 17th time, you've already noticed the mistakes, shortcomings and shortcuts throughout. How about the "Beautiful Losers" guy...when he first enters the movie...those others were going through the crazy post cards left behind, and he knocks on the door. The others open it to let him 'in,' and he enters the room...from a bathroom?!?! That had a chain lock on it?!??! Why was he locked in the bathroom?!?!?!
"QuadraJet. Yup. GM." There's something really cool about the mishaps, though. The characters are so odd, yet familiar...isn't it always the chick with the black eye who trusts the advice from a mystical card game and has developed "a whole new construct..."?!?!?! ...old people who rant about assassinations, the Spanish War and anarchy and are totally full of **it??!!? ...stoners yapping about Scooby-Doo conspiracies and blue Kr'shnas??? The girl from the book store had it right, when she summed up the friend who just met her after watching his friend throw a tent into a river. She says, "you pull from all the **** that you read..." Doesn't that describe everyone in this movie? And how about the tent scene--in any other movie, his friends would be convincing him to stab the guy who screwed his girlfriend with a tent peg. Not in this film.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Linklater's first movie was his best. Still enjoyable unlike the 70s moviePublished 2 months ago by Maria
Richard Linklater doing what he does best with his first feature. Doesn't get much better than this. Read morePublished 6 months ago by darrin love
completely original. still great. when i first saw it i thought 'i gotta go to austin.' still haven't. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
This movie felt like a two hour conversation with the kid in class who thinks he's a unique tortured genius. Read morePublished 7 months ago by JLund
Interesting film but too long. Gets tiresome and repetitive as marginal characters parade before camera. Some of it is stellar Linklater and brilliant, some of it is forgetful. Read morePublished 7 months ago by D. Crowell
Slacker still holds up after years and years. It is amazing how memorable various scenes are (especially when compared with other films where I forget what has happened even before... Read morePublished 7 months ago by rbrogan3