Old 09-06-2002, 07:26 PM
Richard Linklater's "Slacker" (8/10)

Directed By: Richard Linklater
Written By: Richard Linklater
Starring: A bunch of people you've never heard of
97 Minutes/R/1991

Richard Linklater, the director of films such as "Dazed and Confused", "Before Sunrise", and "Waking Life", is the voice of a new generation. A generation that didn't have that special war to set them apart, or a major crisis that brought them closer together. A generation that sits back, drink's their latte, gossips, and stays up late beyond their bedtime discussing ideas and interests not a single person born before 1960 would understand, or have any interest in. Slacker, Linklater's debut film, embodies everything important and interesting about independent film-making. In Hollywood, before there was such non-linear films like Pulp Fiction and Magnolia, there was Slacker. A better film then the two? No. Arguably more important? Yes.

Taking a Altman-esque approach we are driven into the lives of many, many, many characters. Some are interesting, some are funny, others are boring, and some are just plain weird. The funny thing is we all know atleast one of these characters. They are slackers, outkasts of the "real world". They wake up at noon, go down to the local gas station, hang around at coffee shops and streets corners bumming smokes off of strangers, and spend endless nights attending local, amatuer concerts. Each character in Slacker is given 5-10 minutes of screentime. Their conflict, or interests are brought up through, which seemed to me, mostly imporvised dialouge. Some was good, especially Linklater's opening monolouge in the taxi cab and a "cool" lady who seems to have a special part of Madonna with her, but other's were lacking the punch or interest. Probably because the characters themselves lacked any punch or interest. And that is probably because they're slackers, who lack any interests!

The acting has been called amatuer, which it is. These people aren't professionals. I doubt any of them would consider themselves actors, more like friend's of a guy who needed some people to help make a independent film. But this wasn't a problem for me. I would rather see a real life slacker play a slacker rather than a trained actor play a slacker! It felt real and re-freashing to see clothes that looked like they fit the character and it wasn't picked out by a costume designer who didn't know shit about the character.

Subtley, yet effectively Richard Linklater was able to create a solid satire of our modern society. The society of "slackers". People who dropped out of highschool, or never attended at a regular pace. Take a look at the older character, the man who catches a theif in action at his apartment. To me, it seemed he was the same thief 35 years earlier. Searching, in a clumsy manner, through bookshelves and looking like a fool when he holds a gun. In a calm, matured fashion the old man takes the thief on a walk and explains he aggression and loathing of government and his selfish resentment of his now deceased wife. Through these two characters Linklater is able to show the audience all people are upset and angered by our society, not just the kids protesting the war, ranting about the assasination of JFK or police brutality. Fathers, sons, brothers, and mothers we all have our opinion on society, no matter how we were raised or treated as a children. Could it be we are pissed at the government? The fact that are girlfriend's leave us for wealthier men? Our mother's are murdered everyday by a drunk driver? Are teacher's "failed" us? Are step-brother's get the top bunk?

I can't say, or I just don't need to. You should know for yourself why you are pissed or angered and if you don't... your a slacker.


[This message has been edited by notchreturns (edited 09-06-2002).]
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Old 09-06-2002, 09:17 PM
Oh dear god, I thought you gave 2002's Slackers an 8/10!
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Old 05-04-2003, 05:53 PM
I considered this an extremely interesting movie. First off I'm not a movie critic, so I don't give ratings, I'll just tell you what I thought. The fact that it was completely dialogue driven and involved the comings and goings of so many different characters made it interesting for me to watch. This is really a fun look at the underbelly of your average university town. Most of these people are "slackers" in every sense of the word.

The old crusty anarchist that caught the guy trying to break into his house I felt was one of the more interesting storylines. For all his bluster about hating people and society in general he really seemed lonely and wanting companionship, and left the would be thief thouroughly confused.

The kid with all the television sets was a pretty good little side story also. Anything you can't relive and scrutinize down the minute detail was irrelevant to this guy. I didn't totally understand this segment but found it intriguing.

Some will probably find this movie boring and pointless, but all the different character's really kept my interest. I'll admit I didn't understand all the complex rambling dialogues and half cocked theories introduced here (I'm just a workin' stiff ) but I found it pretty entertaining and real change of pace from alot of the movies I'd seen before and since.
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Old 05-05-2003, 02:20 PM
Slacker(9.5/10) is one of my favorite movies of all time, it opened the doors for independent filmmakers like Kevin Smith and Larry Clark, this movie on its own still holds up to this day. Richard Linklater is a talented filmmaker who knows what to do with a film. He urges us as the viewer to enjoy the ride! I still view Slacker as one of the better independent movies out there and to this day watch it over and over again! Slacker is talented filmmaking at its best!
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