Sling Blade Reviews

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Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
September 7, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: A-
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Todd McCarthy
Variety
July 23, 2008
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Derek Adams
Time Out
June 24, 2006
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Jeff Strickler
Minneapolis Star Tribune
November 6, 2002
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Susan Stark
Detroit News
May 9, 2002
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Washington Post
May 9, 2002
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Rita Kempley
Washington Post
May 8, 2002
A masterpiece of Southern storytelling.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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Janet Maslin
New York Times
May 8, 2002
An abundance of long, flat medium shots that rob the film of intimacy and give it a sleepy pace.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
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Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
February 14, 2001
A mesmerizing parable of good and evil and a splendid example of Southern storytelling at its most poetic and imaginative.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
If there were the slightest justice and curiosity in the Academy Award process, Thornton's work here would get a nomination.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Sean Means
Film.com
January 1, 2000
In Sling Blade, Thornton lays claim to the title of hyphenate of the year.
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Tom Keogh
Film.com
January 1, 2000
The lure of Sling Blade is both elemental and hauntingly familiar, and I would not be surprised if Thornton's breakthrough film is one day considered a classic in its own right.
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 1, 2000
A fine motion picture.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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John Hartl
Film.com
January 1, 2000
[Thornton] does wonders with Yoakam, who could have played a standard villain but always manages to suggest a man trapped within his prejudices.
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Dwight Garner
Salon.com
January 1, 2000
By its midpoint, however, Thornton has begun forcing both the film's poetry and the preternatural goodness of its simple-minded protagonist, and Sling Blade's sweet charms begin to curdle.
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Edward Guthmann
San Francisco Chronicle
January 1, 2000
All the actors in Sling Blade do magnificent work, but it's Thornton who stays with you for days.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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Desson Thomson
Washington Post
January 1, 2000
Sling Blade takes you down paths full of primitive, almost biblical implications, but it also finds comic relief in moments of palpable tension.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
January 1, 2000
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
January 1, 2000
[Thornton] performance is so good that his directing may be slighted.
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Entertainment Weekly
November 27, 1996
Full Review | Original Score: A-