Tarnation - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Tarnation Reviews

April 15, 2005
Nearly impossible to watch, thoroughly unpleasant yet strangely arresting.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
March 24, 2005
A soul-baring scrapbook of a film, its audacity surpassed only by its tragedy.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
January 21, 2005
Although aggressively unconventional, it's never pretentious.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
January 21, 2005
An astonishing multimedia diary ... all accompanied by a scrolled family history that is as harrowing to read as a ransom note.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 10, 2004
The movie climbs inside your head and rattles your consciousness.
Read More | Original Score: B+
December 10, 2004
In making beautiful peace with a difficult past, Caouette has delivered a promising vision of a future.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
November 18, 2004
Its fierce emotional honesty can't be denied.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
November 18, 2004
Tarnation may not always be pretty, but it's pure, powerful stuff.
Read More | Original Score: A-
November 12, 2004
Mesmerizing.
November 12, 2004
Utterly absorbing and accessible.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
November 12, 2004
Heartbreaking film.
November 4, 2004
Tinged with nostalgia and flooded with narcissism, this isn't easy to watch. But Caouette's fractured history is imbued with heart-crushing sincerity.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
October 26, 2004
It's just devastating stuff.
October 22, 2004
The mesmerizing, trippy and thoroughly heartbreaking result of two decades' work.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
October 22, 2004
A tortured, inspired, convulsively beautiful film memoir.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
October 21, 2004
It transcends the recent trend of self-revelatory documentaries and becomes something rare: art.
Full Review | Original Score: A
October 21, 2004
It is to be hoped that Mr. Caouette can make many more films of all kinds, but he will probably never again be able to cut to the bone of his existence with such sublime feeling.
October 19, 2004
A daunting blend of head trip, cinéma verite, music video, and auto-therapy.
October 19, 2004
By all odds, Tarnation should have been an unwatchable, masochistic morass, but Caouette's love for the broken Renee -- which is the true subject of the film -- is awe-inspiring.
October 15, 2004
A lacerating portrait of a family in free-fall.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
October 15, 2004
A remarkable and remarkably compelling document.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
October 15, 2004
It is a remarkable film, immediate, urgent, angry, poetic and stubbornly hopeful.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
October 15, 2004
A masterpiece.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
October 14, 2004
Caouette lifts his story clear out of the victimized whine that bogs down so many confessional memoirs and offers the viewer instead an intimate look inside his ravaged yet loving head, at once street-smart and haloed by the naiveté of a young saint.
October 14, 2004
As raw and personal as a movie can be, the equivalent of a cinematic journal or diary. But it's also artfully constructed and articulated, written, edited and musically designed with often jolting brilliance.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
October 7, 2004
Tarnation is a collage of pain that breaks over you like a wave.
October 7, 2004
As Caouette lays out events in storybook fashion, what pulsates through Tarnation is that life, even at its most hellish, is a thing of perilous and desperate rapture.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
October 6, 2004
A tale of overwhelming sadness and fierce histrionics.
October 6, 2004
The results, Cuisinarted but coherent, are an entrancing, egocentric trip into a life so unfavored by fortune its owner would be forgiven for believing in past-life crimes and karmic retribution.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
October 6, 2004
Caouette has taken the broken pieces of two lives and slowly, painstakingly, pasted them together -- and created one superb work of art.
October 6, 2004
Certainly one of the strangest and most interesting movies of the year, and I suspect that in years to come a number of other strange and interesting movies will show traces of its influence.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
October 6, 2004
Caouette's triumph over his harrowing childhood and adolescence is itself a huge accomplishment -- but with Tarnation, he has used art, wit and a huge heart to forge his experiences into an unqualified masterpiece.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
October 6, 2004
It's a riveting high-wire act by a young man on the verge.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
September 30, 2004
A film that defies description. I'd call it some kind of miracle.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
September 29, 2004
Getting so close to real-life mental illness, via footage that spans many years, renders Tarnation a uniquely potent experience.
July 20, 2004
Caouette has crafted 19 years' worth of home movies, video diaries and answering machine messages into a bracing autobiographical fever dream.