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Slipstream (2007)

tomatometer

23

Average Rating: 4.2/10
Reviews Counted: 40
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 31

Slipstream is a failed experiment; confusing instead of coherent.

7

Average Rating: 3.7/10
Critic Reviews: 15
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 14

Slipstream is a failed experiment; confusing instead of coherent.

audience

29

liked it
Average Rating: 2.4/5
User Ratings: 3,509

My Rating

Movie Info

Aging screenwriter Felix Bonhoeffer has lived his life in two states of existence--the world of reality and the world inside his head. Hired to rewrite a murder mystery set in a desert diner and unaware that his brain is on the verge of implosion, Felix is politely baffled when the characters from his movie start showing up in his life and vice versa. Felix tries to maintain his equanimity as reality and fantasy collide in an increasingly whirling slipstream, while his memory banks fire off

Feb 26, 2008

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All Critics (40) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (9) | Rotten (31) | DVD (5)

Slipstream ultimately winds up an avant-garde film that just ain't all that avant.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic IconTop Critic

At 96 minutes, this vanity/insanity project runs a bit long; five minutes would have been plenty.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: New York Post
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Slipstream is an experiment in visual stream-of-consciousness, but stream-of-consciousness fares better as a literary form than a cinematic one.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Slipstream is Anthony Hopkins's third film as a director and his first as a quasi-avant-garde filmmaker working well outside the mainstream.

October 26, 2007
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Leave it to a 69-year-old actor to make the year's most experimental film.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Either one of the most self-indulgent vanity projects in the history of the Hollywood star system, or a rare revealing look at a distinguished actor who usually keeps his real self out of the spotlight.

October 25, 2007 Full Review Source: AV Club
AV Club
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Alternately interesting and unwatchable.

February 29, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Slipstream is utterly unwatchable. I hated every minute of it.

February 28, 2008 Full Review Source: BrandonFibbs.com
BrandonFibbs.com

A Hopkins personal vanity project

November 9, 2007 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

A miserable mess of a stream-of-consciousness movie.

October 28, 2007 Full Review
Spirituality and Practice

What would have perhaps made an excellent short subject becomes a cumbersome, confusing and deeply unsatisfying mess of a vanity project.

October 28, 2007 Full Review Source: Eye for Film
Eye for Film

[S]o fascinating a failure that it's worth seeing...

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Flick Filosopher
Flick Filosopher

If not exactly dull, Hopkins' stream-of-consciousness rant is nonetheless self-indulgent and crammed with bits of business that never add up to anything much.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Anthony Hopkins wrote and directed Slipstream. It's a free-form, surreal meditation on stuff that, evidently, popped into Hopkins' head while he was writing.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Daily News
Los Angeles Daily News

Has one trick up its sleeve, and once that trick is revealed, the film collapses in on itself in a manner that will irritate more viewers than it intrigues.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

...makes you long for a pretentious, arty student short. Because those are only about eight minutes long.

October 26, 2007 Full Review Source: Sun Publications (Chicago, IL)
Sun Publications (Chicago, IL)

If consummate thespian Anthony Hopkins downplays, even dismisses, discussions about the "craft" of acting, then Slipstream, only the second film he's directed, betrays evidence that it's a subject to which he's nevertheless given a lot of thought.

October 25, 2007 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

Stylish attempt at Hopkins visualizing post-traumatic Hollywood syndrome, but there should be a rule that movies helmed by movie stars turned directors need to come with some sort of equivalent of the Surgeon General warning label.

October 25, 2007 Full Review Source: Long Island Press
Long Island Press

Audience Reviews for Slipstream

"A scriptwriter sees the line between his characters and real people begin to blur"... sounds good on paper, doesn't it? I'm sure the studio thought so when they green lighted this bit of excessive hubris, especially when it was pitched by Anthony Hopkins, who was chief cook and bottle washer for the project - being writer, director, actor and what the heck, even wrote and performed most of the background music.

Wow, what could possibly go wrong? Well nothing unless Hopkins spent many a day imbibing mind altering chemicals while discussing states of alternate realities with David Lynch. Sadly, all these ruminations concerning what is "real" only ends up being a cheap cop out where the threadbare seams of a script apparently written on the fly are readily apparent. As one of the characters bemoans "we've lost the plot". Indeed!

While this film doesn't have 7 foot tall rabbits or dancing dwarves, it is very Lynchian in its approach and tone - but instead of giving you the feeling that you are watching something profound that you just aren't seeing quite right, Slipstream is like a high school play with bad acting - too obvious and a one trick pony, with little wink, wink asides meant to cover up the fact that the film is short on vision and all too proud of its, I will confess, nifty concept.

Perhaps Hopkins had a clear vision for this film, but regardless it comes off as uneven and you suspect that Hopkins may have been having a jab at the industry and fans that enabled him the opportunity to stroke his vanity. As the film fades to black you hear laughter and a bit of a looney tunes melody - some big inside joke or an attempt to say "yeah, this is all a mess so I might as well admit it".

Personally I think the film could certainly used a bit of collaboration - by allowing Hopkins free reign, he could indulge his whimsy with no-one to tell him that you can't mess with the audience by using slight of hand; passing off lazy continuity and a lack of clarity by claiming that Slipstream is time moving backwards and forwards at the same time - ok, even if you buy into the alternate reality stuff, there's still no excuse for having no character development whatsoever.

In the end, one could support the supposition that the entire film was all in Hopkins' head - a dream within a dream, so to speak - and art imitating life (or vice versa). In surer hands I think that there could be relevance here, but as it stands you end up with a bit of overindulgence that, for me, had only one redeeming moment: when the owner of Dolly's Diner makes an appearance, looking like Dolly Parton and when asked her name she winks at the audience and says "I'm the character playing the Dolly Parton look a like".
October 6, 2011
maxthesax
paul sandberg

Super Reviewer

As I write this segment at 59mins in, I can't decide if this film is brilliant or pretentious. Certainly the first third (and pretty much all) of the camera work that isn't a jump cut is pretentious (esp the color changes are not earned). And this second third I've just finished is plain brilliant, a new sendup of movie production on par with The Player, Swimming with Sharks, and Day of the Locust. I do know that however I turn out feeling about this movie in the end, I will probably rent the DVD and do tons of research on how/why Hopkins put this project together. Okay, resuming screening.

1:hr10mins: this movie is tripping me out, but also annoying me too(again with the unearned color and cutting "style").

Okay, the SAVE creen is awesome! I'm totally geeking out on the writer aspects too, cuz it's like very much in the vein of a William S. Burroughs or Philip K. Dick confrontation b/w the self and reality. Perhaps other writers oft wonder if their lives will turn into that blur of story and objectivity; the multiple layers of reality that stack themselves before us cannot be ignored and must be grandly experienced, like a fever dream spanning a few decades. This film captures that very well. It is all really hinging on the last 10-15mins though.

Alright, I thought it was awesome with the horror detour to the framed beginning/ending tragic device. Awesome as
Schizopolis or Adaptation or Naked Lunch? Hellz NO. But I enjoyed; others will rate 3 to 3.5. I give it that extra bump just because the stylistic blend confused and angered me in a kinda fun way.
March 2, 2009
Stinger839

Super Reviewer

Were I to watch this film not knowing anything about it, I'd have given it 2 stars for being obnoxiously confusing. But, knowing that it is an autobiographical interpretation of Anthony Hopkins' career and views of todays dying film art and overlap of media, I would give it 3 stars. Put um together and you get 2.5 stars. Watch it when you have something else to do at the same time.
February 27, 2008
puffchunk
Curtis Lilly

Super Reviewer

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