Dazed and Confused [2 Discs] [Criterion Collection] product details page

Dazed and Confused [2 Discs] [Criterion Collection]

Dazed and Confused [2 Discs] [Criterion Collection]
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Reviewer:Matthew Doberman, Dazed and Confused is an American Graffiti for the 1990s, set in the 1970s. Though not quite up to the high standard of its spiritual predecessor, it does an excellent job of following an ensemble cast, who, through the course of one day, enjoy the myriad emotions and experiences that compose the teenage years. Writer/director Richard Linklater does not force the film to follow one storyline in particular, and this choice helps him avoid the conventions of the teen genre, in which the kids learn a big lesson after a series of wacky misdeeds. Indeed, the film is notable for its refreshing lack of sentiment. This isn't a movie interested in leading us through standard character arcs, and it gives us a portrait of youth that is surprisingly realistic, wiping away much of the gloss with which we often remember "the best years of our lives," but never going too far in the other direction by indulging in too much grittiness. Dazed and Confused is also remarkable for its sheer number of young actors who went on to big careers, including Milla Jovovich, Jason London, Joey Lauren Adams, Adam Goldberg, Ben Affleck, Parker Posey, and Matthew McConaughey, as the memorable Wooderson ("That's what I like about these high school girls: I keep getting older; they stay the same age"). Dazed and Confused offers neither a warmly reminiscent nor an intentionally bleak picture of high school. It is a uniquely astute portrait of those teenage years, which at times seem full of magic and energy and at other times feel as anticlimactic and banal as adulthood. ~ Matthew Doberman, Rovi