Shadows (1959) - Rotten Tomatoes

Shadows (1959)

Shadows (1959)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

An improvisational drama about two light-skinned blacks and their experiences passing between two different racial cultures. Directed by John Cassavetes, the improvised music of Charlie Mingus and Shifi Hadi nicely underscores the mood of the film.more
Rating: PG
Genre: Drama, Romance, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: John Cassavetes
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 7, 1998
Criterion Collection


Jay Grecco
as Brawler
Bob Rech
as Taxi Driver
Joyce Miles
as Girl in Restaurant
Nancy Deale
as Girl in Restaurant
Gigi Brooks
as Girl in Restaurant
Lynn Hamilton
as Girl at Party
Marilyn Clark
as Girl at party
Joanne Sages
as Girl at Party
Jed McGarvey
as Girl at Party
Greta Thyssen
as Girl at party
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Shadows

Critic Reviews for Shadows

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (5)

Again and again the line between acting and living is erased. Caught in the ecstasy of collective creation, a handful of earnest amateurs have almost accidentally produced a flawed but significant piece of folk art.

Full Review… | September 27, 2015
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

This is the only Cassavetes film made without a full script (it grew out of acting improvs), and rarely has so much warmth, delicacy, and raw feeling emerged so naturally and beautifully from performances in an American film.

Full Review… | April 29, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

A very modern, impressionistic snapshot of New York bohemia with scenes linked not by dramatic line but by place, time and mood.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Shadows is an unfinished picture in every sense of the word. Yet it is fitfully dynamic, endowed with a raw but vibrant strength, conveying an illusion of being a record of real people, and it is incontestably sincere.

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Arguably the founding work of the American independent cinema.

Full Review… | June 17, 2003
Village Voice
Top Critic

An impressionistic whirl worth a thousand fumbled words

Full Review… | August 1, 2015

Audience Reviews for Shadows

Don't have much to say about this movie, seems others enjoyed it I did Not. 1 Star 3-2514

Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer


A new-waveish beatnik sociopolitical commentary that gets far less recognition than it deserves.

Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer


This is a pretty good, and very different, drama movie, but it's not all that exciting or intense. Plus, I wasn't familiar or impressed with any of the actors.

Aj V

Super Reviewer

Shadows Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

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