100

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Linklater is a sly and formidable talent, bringing an anthropologist's eye to this spectacularly funny celebration of the rites of stupidity. His shitfaced "American Graffiti" is the ultimate party movie -- loud, crude, socially irresponsible and totally irresistible.
Full Review
91

Entertainment Weekly

By Ty Burr
From the opening shot of a burnt-orange GTO cruising a high school parking lot to the strains of Aerosmith's ''Sweet Emotion,'' Richard Linklater's film nails mid-'70s adolescence so precisely that you'll need Clearasil by the end credits.
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88

USA Today

By Mike Clark
The "Age of Innocence" oozes anthropological dazzle, but Dazed and Confused may some day rate its own Smithsonian showings for clinically re-creating the High School Experience 1976. [20 Sept 1993]
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88

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Rick Groen
The surprise lies in Linklater's ability to breathe so much fresh life into a tired formula...This is a picture that recollects not merely a period in time but a state of mind.
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80

Empire

Despite some gags which use the benefit of hindsight too much for their own good, this is a smart piece of filmmaking which suggests Linklater is already one of the more formidable talents of the 90s.
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75

Chicago Tribune

By Gene Siskel
For a while, I resented the sexist, cruel behavior in the film, much of it revolving around the hazing of underclassmen. But gradually, I saw the movie turn into a brash expose of stupid adolescent traditions. [24 Sept 1993]
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75

San Francisco Chronicle

The movie's episodic view of a collection of interesting friends, sweethearts, and cliques often rings so true that it might be a documentary...It's so right, you might think Linklater has mastered time travel. [24 Sept 1993]
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75

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
This is a good film, but it would not cheer people up much at a high school reunion.
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60

TV Guide

Expertly captures the details and textures of the time without condescending or lapsing into cheap-shot parody.
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50

ReelViews

By James Berardinelli
What Linklater does exceptionally well is open the door on an era seventeen years in the past. This is 1976, from the music and cars...to the people and their attitudes. You'd have to climb into a time machine to get a better view...However, this is light entertainment -- nothing groundbreaking or even especially noteworthy.
Full Review
78 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.