Shotgun Stories Reviews

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Chris Barsanti
Film Journal International
March 26, 2008
There's no escaping the fact that the film, well-crafted though it may be, is ultimately just as slow as the proverbial molasses.
Top Critic
Ben Kenigsberg
Time Out
November 17, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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Frank Scheck
Hollywood Reporter
March 28, 2008
Never manages to be fully convincing.
Bob Strauss
Los Angeles Daily News
April 25, 2008
It's clearly a labor of love and no doubt true to some regional ways and attitudes. But jeez, it's self-parodic, and all the more so for taking place in some uncharted corner of Dixie where nobody has the slightest sense of humor.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Coco Forsythe
Future Movies UK
October 12, 2007
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
December 14, 2007
... a simple human story with the archetypal power of Greek myth. It feels like an American classic.
Full Review | Original Score: 92/100
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
June 6, 2008
Few films are so observant about how we relate with one another. Few are as sympathetic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express
April 28, 2011
There is indeed something mythical, even scriptural, about the struggle among the seven Hayes brothers in Jeff Nichols' remarkable Shotgun Stories.
Leo Goldsmith
indieWIRE
August 8, 2009
There is much to "Shotgun Stories" that elevates it above the fray of Green derivatives and unflattering categorizations, bolstered by a roster of naturalistic, fully assimilated performances, led by "Bug"'s now ubiquitous Michael Shannon.
James Rocchi
Cinematical
February 23, 2008
Shotgun Stories is, at heart, a film about people who discover what they have to let go of, and who confront the terrifying possibility of hope.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Andrew L. Urban
Urban Cinefile
December 4, 2008
The credentials of many festival screenings might suggest to alert viewers that this isn't a shoot 'em up between two hill billy clans
Brian Gibson
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
July 10, 2008
The end reveals just how poetic, shifting and dazzling Nichols' touch was all along. That's because Shotgun Stories manages to pull away from a hair-trigger resolution with the same inherent right-ness that loaded the story with such tragic force.
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
April 3, 2008
This promising debut feature is remarkable for its use of inaction, the threats, standoffs, aborted shoving matches, but very little actual violence.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Cinematical
August 5, 2008
The real key to the film is the commanding Michael Shannon.
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Maureen M. Hart
Chicago Tribune
July 9, 2008
Director Jeff Nichols lets the action unfold slowly following an impromptu insult, but the escalation of hatred and pain feels natural.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Steve Rose
Guardian
October 18, 2008
Set in rural Arkansas, Jeff Nichols' relaxed, distinctive debut revels in the milieu of its redneck characters, but injects their rural half-blood feud with an almost mythic quality.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Ross Bennett
Empire Magazine
April 11, 2008
An interesting first effort from Nichols -- making him a director to look out for in the future.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Derek Adams
Time Out
November 18, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Matt Pais
Metromix.com
March 27, 2008
Simple lives can have complicated histories, and Shotgun Stories has a hard, lived-in understanding of how the past is a monkey that's firmly attached to your back.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Jeremiah Kipp
Slant Magazine
March 23, 2008
Alternately terse and elegiac, Shotgun Stories works best when it observes the lives of its main characters, three lower-class brothers from southeast Arkansas.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Jim Ridley
Village Voice
April 2, 2008
[Star Michael Shannon is] one of the most formidable unsung actors working today in American movies.
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