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Waking Life

Director Richard Linklater's animated film follows a young man as he floats in and out of philosophical discussions with a succession of eccentrics and passionate thinkers, all the while uncertain whether he's conscious or dreaming.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 3.6
Rotten Tomatoes® Scores
80%  
88%
 
Movie Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

See all Waking Life Reviews

 
This inventive animated film, which takes Linklater back to his roots in Austin and Slacker, represents a summation of all the philosophical concerns that have defined him as spokesperson for Gen-X.
Emanuel Levy, Variety  full review
 
The endless philosophising is a bit sophomoric and more jokes would help, but this is one of a kind that grows more absorbing the longer it runs.
Time Out, Time Out  full review
 
For a movie heralded as the cutting edge of visual innovation, Waking Life is disappointingly dull in every other respect.
Jeff Strickler, Minneapolis Star Tribune  full review
 
Exhilarating, transporting, funny and haunting -- and at times maddeningly heady or narcotically logy -- Waking Life doesn't compare to any other movie experience I've ever had.
Stephanie Zacharek, Salon.com  full review
 
An instant cult classic, one that's tailor-made for multiple viewings and bound to be popular among college students.
Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald  full review
 
To paraphrase the enduring title of a new-wave album, it is pure pop for dream people.
Steven Rosen, Denver Post  full review
 
It may not be for everyone -- the movie requires a high tolerance for statements such as 'there's only one instant, and it's now, and it's eternity' -- but it's like nothing else in theaters right now.
Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times  full review
 
Adds up to little more than a series of disconnected impressions, but it holds interest despite an almost nonexistent narrative, and that's something.
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle  full review
 
Often surreal, Waking Life transcends boundaries of technology, imagination.
Jay Carr, Boston Globe
 
It's thoughtful, provocative, liberating and fun.
Desson Thomson, Washington Post
 
Minute 69 evolves several geological epochs later into Minute 70 -- and then there are 27 minutes left to go!
Stephen Hunter, Washington Post
 
Linklater mixed his grad-student-on-speed discourses with a few genuinely engrossing yakkers.
Eric Harrison, Houston Chronicle  full review
 
Like My Dinner with Andre and other appallingly smart movies, this one reminded me that I need to read more books and watch less television.
Bruce Newman, San Jose Mercury News
 
Anyone who finds value in wondering who we are or why we're here, what's real and what's not, should be overjoyed to find a theatrical release with the same sense of curiosity.
Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News  full review
 
A smart, sensuous and sensory mind trip that caroms around a universe of thought.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer
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