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Slacker (1991)



Average Rating: 8/10
Critic Reviews: 6
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 0

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 9,418

My Rating

Movie Info

One of the key American independent films of the 1990s, Richard Linklater's feature debut is an audacious look at the twentysomething culture in the college town of Austin, Texas. Set over the course of a 24-hour period, the film is a collection of short, unconnected glimpses into the dropout subculture, touching base with a variety of musicians, students, street people and general eccentrics. While there's no real plot to speak of, Linklater's eye for nuance and gift for dialogue are superb,


Drama, Classics, Comedy

Richard Linklater

Sep 14, 2004

The Criterion Collection

Watch It Now



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All Critics (37) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (28) | Rotten (5) | DVD (17)

What Linklater has captured is a generation of bristling minds unable to turn their thoughts into action.

May 12, 2001 | Comment (1)
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is a work of scatterbrained originality, funny, unexpected and ceaselessly engaging.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The experience is funny, surreal and weird. Sometimes it's even scary.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A movie with an appeal almost impossible to describe.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (4)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Linklater is very aware that his film doesn't have a linear narrative and the movie is structured with that knowledge, as well as for a variety in tone and theme.

October 18, 2013 Full Review Source:

[VIDEO ESSAY] "Slacker" is a hallmark of American independent cinema because it is so thoroughly original in its concepts and execution.

March 26, 2012 Full Review Source:

The indie film has a fresh feel.

March 9, 2009 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

A charming ensemble piece, that may be the ultimate campus comedy, about media-fixated, affectless youngsters who became spokepersons for Generation X

June 27, 2005 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com | Comments (2)

An exercise in meandering self-importance.

May 4, 2005 Full Review Source: Lessons of Darkness
Lessons of Darkness

A brilliant film that plays like a chain of linked short short stories.

April 7, 2005 | Comment (1)
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

A landscape-changing film for what it represents, as well as for what it contains.

February 18, 2005 Full Review Source: Arizona Daily Star
Arizona Daily Star

A landmark by an American master

December 15, 2004

Slacker is populated by new-age beatniks with neither fashion nor poetry, populating a culture that's distinguished by its lack of culture.

November 1, 2004 Full Review Source: Not Coming to a Theater Near You
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

A key independent film of the early 90s.

September 15, 2004 Full Review Source: Creative Loafing
Creative Loafing

Linklater proved from the start that he knew his way around a camera and could tell an interesting tale in 60 seconds, too

September 2, 2004 Full Review Source:

Interesting for about 45 minutes, and increasingly tiresome thereafter.

July 27, 2004
New Times

An innovative film with its many zany portraits of dropouts from the world of work and adult responsibility

July 19, 2003 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

History may be written by the winners, but Slackers tells the story of life's lovable losers

June 19, 2002 Full Review Source: All Movie Guide
All Movie Guide

Slacker wasn't really interesting enough to think all that much about.

February 28, 2002 Full Review Source: Goatdog's Movies
Goatdog's Movies

There are some interesting people here, but they seem outnumbered by those that are extremely dull.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Audience Reviews for Slacker

Even in this early stage of his career, Linklater makes his ambition known. Though the entire thing probably won't resonate with everyone, there may in fact be something for everyone in this weird, meandering narrative experiment that will change the way you think about the strangers you see every day.
October 12, 2013
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

The camera tracks the aimless slackers of Austin, TX, following one for a few minutes and then veering off to chase another as they drink coffee and spout a 50/50 mix of philosophy and conspiracy theories. An experimental portrait of the subculture of bright but unambitious dropouts and unemployed postgrads that exists in every college town.
March 13, 2013
Greg S

Super Reviewer

A series of vignettes on life as a twenty-something resident in and around the city of Austin, Texas. Known in some circles as a "cult classic", Slacker features atrocious acting, shaky camera work and Madonna's pap smear.
March 18, 2012
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

Anti-Artist: Uh, I don't do much really, I just read, and work here, and, uh, sleep and eat, and, uh, watch movies. 

This review is going to be pretty short, as there's nothing really worth talking about. 

Slacker is a plotless film that follows losers around. Most of the time, these losers think they are geniuses. They talk about complicated issues, and give their theories on these issues. Every person the movie follows is that guy or girl you see on the street that starts talking to you about shit you don't care about. The only thing you can think about when around them is, I wanna get the fuck away from this weirdo. 

Linklater made some good movies after this, and a bunch of critics adore this film. In my opinion, it is useless and boring. If listening to crackpots talk about nothing that really matters is your idea of a good time, have at it. I'll take Dazed and Confused, and Suburbia over this.
January 2, 2012
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

    1. Working on Same Painting: Sorry I'm late.
    2. Sidewalk Psychic: It's all right, time doesn't exist.
    – Submitted by Scott R (2 years ago)
View all quotes (1)

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May 3, 2011:
Slacker Turns 20; Unusual Remake in the Works
To help celebrate the 20th anniversary of Richard Linklater's "Slacker," 23 directors are...
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