Synopsis: Richard Linklater’s Slacker presents a day in the life of a loose-knit subculture of marginal, eccentric, and overeducated citizens in Austin, Texas. Shooting the film on 16mm for a mere $23,000 writer/producer/director Linklater and his crew of friends eschewed a traditional plot, choosing instead to employ long takes and fluid transitions to create a tapestry of over a hundred characters, each as unique as the last, culminating in an episodic portrait of a distinct vernacular culture and a tribute to bohemian cerebration. Slacker is a prescient look at an emerging generation of aggressive nonparticipants, and one of the key films of the American independent film movement of the 1990s.

Slacker 8.0

If not for the amateurish feel of the movie (you can see at least one boom mic, there are plenty of non-actors in speaking parts, it’s totally low/no-budget, …etc), I’d give this film an 8.5. I had seen it before, but liked it so much that I ended up buying it a while back. And I don’t regret it one bit biggrin

Amittedly, it’s not a movie for everyone:

Firstly, it doesn’t have a 3-act story like most films – it follows one character after another in a seamless collection of vignettes, never returning to characters or locations once visited.

Secondly, most of the characters are offbeat. And, in some cases, that would be putting it mildly. These people all have very distinct personalities and, while some may be people you wouldn’t want to hang out with, they are quite appealing on screen – you can’t help but wonder who they are and what their place in the world is.

Finally, the movie is full of ruminations about abstractions (like dreams, etc.) and on political views. It’s all a bit out there, but some of it makes you think and most of it utterly engrossing – even if the actors’ delivery isn’t always up to snuff.

It’s a model of simplicty and ingenuity; that’s the beauty of this movie. Frankly, I think that it’s hardly surprising that it inspired Kevin Smith to get into filmmaking (even if his works are totally different). Back in 1990, there was probably nothing else like it. It must have been quite an eye-opener for him.

Well, as far as I’m concerned, it retains that power even to this day – almost 20 years later smile

What do you think?

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