Dazed and Confused

1993, Drama, 1h 43m

62 Reviews 100,000+ Ratings

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critics consensus

Featuring an excellent ensemble cast, a precise feel for the 1970s, and a killer soundtrack, Dazed and Confused is a funny, affectionate, and clear-eyed look at high school life. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

This coming-of-age film follows the mayhem of group of rowdy teenagers in Austin, Texas, celebrating the last day of high school in 1976. The graduating class heads for a popular pool hall and joins an impromptu keg party, however star football player Randall "Pink" Floyd (Jason London) has promised to focus on the championship game and abstain from partying. Meanwhile, the incoming freshmen try to avoid being hazed by the seniors, most notably the sadistic bully Fred O'Bannion (Ben Affleck).

Cast & Crew

Jason London
Randall 'Pink' Floyd
Wiley Wiggins
Mitch Kramer
Sasha Jenson
Don Dawson
Milla Jovovich
Michelle Burroughs
Marissa Ribisi
Cynthia Dunn
Adam Goldberg
Mike Newhouse
Anthony Rapp
Anthony 'Tony' Olson
Matthew McConaughey
David Wooderson
Ben Affleck
Fred O'Bannion
Zeke Mills
Old Timer
Lee Daniel
Cinematographer
Sandra Adair
Film Editor
John Frick
Production Design
Jenny C. Patrick
Art Direction
Deborah Pastor
Set Decoration
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Critic Reviews for Dazed and Confused

Audience Reviews for Dazed and Confused

  • Mar 11, 2021
    If you were in this movie you probably became a movie star. Seriously, what a casting call: Matthew McConaughey, Ben Affleck, Milla Jovovich, Parker Posey, and more. Those are just off the top of my head. Watching Dazed and Confused with that timeless, rocking soundtrack, is like getting in a time machine that takes you back to that fantastic, uninhibited feeling of being young with no responsibilities again. I grew up in California, not Texas, in the 80's, not the 70's, and we didn't paddle incoming freshmen, but that doesn't matter a whit in terms of bringing me back to those naive, fantastic times. If you don't have time to watch the whole movie, just listen to Boston's "More than a Feeling." That song and its lyrics could be the condensed review for Dazed and Confused.
    Mark B Super Reviewer
  • Jun 19, 2016
    Definitely bizarre and satisfying to see where today's middle-aged movie legends got their start. In past years, I've developed a respectful though sometimes lukewarm liking of Linklater's existential walky talk, and I feared that a movie about high school stoners would feel sophomoric and the filmmaking skills raw, as evidenced by what I assumed to be clumsy editing of the same floppy-haired dude into nearly every scene of the opening montage. However, upon subsequent reflection, I found the movie deeper than its billing and iconic catchphrases and realized that the editing was to show how protagonist Pink gets along with every clique. The characters go through a shared odyssey of sorts. In the course of one day, they walk the line between cool and not, ultimately finding the selves to which they wish to be true - a fitting tribute to all the seminal summer breaks before the best years of our lives.
    Alice S Super Reviewer
  • May 09, 2015
    Dazed and Confused successfully radiated the high school vibe. Neat flick. All right, all right, all right.
    Maymay A Super Reviewer
  • Mar 12, 2014
    Richard Linklater is one of those directors that consistently delivers fresh and original material yet somehow remains a filmmaker with a lower profile. His projects certainly gain the respect they deserve but they never really go over and above that in terms of awards. He's always been innovative and has adopted some daring approaches to filmmaking with the likes of his free-form indie debut "Slacker", the expansive "Before Sunrise" trilogy, the philosophical "Waking Life" and it's rotoscope animated companion piece "A Scanner Darkly". Even his forthcoming "Boyhood" - a 12 year project following a boy's journey from 5 to 18 years old - is a feat that few, if any, directors have tackled. However, one of his most poignant and entertaining escapades happens to be the mosaic "Dazed and Confused". It was largely ignored upon it's release but has since gained a strong cult status. And for very good reason. The year is 1976 and it's the last day of high school in a small Texan suburbia. Everyone's up for a party and in search of booze and drugs but first, the incoming freshmen must go through some embarrassing initiation rituals organised by the senior students, who take great pleasure in putting the youngsters in their places. Much like his aforementioned and experimental approach to "Slacker", Linklater doesn't have a lot going on narratively. He's fully aware of this, however, and acts only as a mere vessel in allowing his actors the space to breathe and run free in their roles. That being said, there's still a complete focus here and the result is far more solid and entertaining than his debut. It's not often I'll praise a film for it's lack of narrative but in the case of "Dazed and Confused" it's the characterisation that leads the way and each and every one of the actors really shine; Wiley Wiggins is our young guide throughout this turbulent time for teenagers as he falls into a friendship with the senior students on his last day of freshman year and Linklater astutely captures a whole myriad of teenage angst and the carefree emotions of a disaffected youth. Let's not forget that this was only Linklater's second film and it wasn't just him that was finding his way, but also the impressive cast that he put together. Largely unknown at the time of the film's release, many of the actors would go on to become part of the Hollywood firmament. We get well judged performances from all sorts of high school types; from Jason London and his jock pals Sasha Jenson and Cole Hauser to Rory Cochrane's stoner, Adam Goldberg's nerd and Ben Affleck, playing one of his most unlikeable characters, as the school bully. The most memorable from the entirely great ensemble, though, is a small but dynamic and scene stealing role for Matthew McConaughey as the older guy who refuses to grow up and move on. Outwith the performances, Linklater also has a keen eye for capturing the 70's setting (in all it's flair and hair) and taps perfectly into the tone of the era. It's a nostalgic look back at daunting initiations, rebellion and the agonising awkwardness of adolescence and it's told with an affectionate wit and charm. I may not have went to an American high school or got involved in tanning some freshman ass with a pre-made baton but the energy and love for this poignant time really shines through and still operates at a level that will appeal to everyone who has any memory at all of their school experiences or peer pressure. Sharing much in common with George Lucas' "American Graffiti" or Greg Mottola's more contemporary "Superbad", this is a funny and insightful coming-of-age contemplation. Linklater has delivered some wonderful film's over the years and I'm sure he'll continue to do so but, so far, this is his best film to date. It's absolutely superb. Mark Walker
    Mark W Super Reviewer

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