San Francisco Chronicle

Appropriately structured like a ride on skateboard: It swoops back and forth in time, hovers in midair, twists back on itself over and over again, then rolls into silence.
Full Review

Wall Street Journal

By Joe Morgenstern
It's a new and inspired vision of a familiar state of being -- teenage anomie amidst the crumbling wreckage of a middle-class American family. In the space of 78 minutes, Mr. Van Sant and his cinematographer, the peerless Christopher Doyle, manage to suffuse that state with haunting sadness, ubiquitous danger, pulsing power and flickers of hope.
Full Review

Miami Herald

By Rene Rodriguez
The story of Paranoid Park may center on an extreme and unusual case, but it's Van Sant's understanding of -- and compassion for -- the hell of growing up that makes the film such a profound and lasting pleasure.
Full Review

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
The film's sound design, sampling Beethoven and Nino Rota, among others, links up with visual miracles performed by Rain Kathy Li and Wong Kar-Wai's noted cinematographer, Christopher Doyle (In the Mood for Love), to take us inside Alex's head. The result, a defiant slap at slick Hollywood formula, is mesmerizing.
Full Review

Chicago Tribune

By Michael Phillips
“Elephant” may have won the Palme d’Or at Cannes but it really didn’t have anything to say about anything. Modest and artful, Paranoid Park says a great deal.
Full Review

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
Paranoid Park has the slightly glum insularity of minimalist fiction, but it's the first of Van Sant's blitzed-generation films in which a young man wakes up instead of shutting down.
Full Review

The Hollywood Reporter

By Kirk Honeycutt
In Paranoid Park, Gus Van Sant enters the world of high school kids just as he did in "Elephant," achieving this time a much sharper, more focused portrait of how these rapidly maturing young people act, think, speak and behave.
Full Review

Boston Globe

By Wesley Morris
Slight but fascinating.
Full Review

New York Daily News

By Elizabeth Weitzman
The story's fractured structure - and Christopher Doyle's dreamlike cinematography - make for a striking mood piece.
Full Review

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Carrie Rickey
The fluid film cinematography of Christopher Doyle and Rain Kathy Li, intercut with grainy Super-8 shots of park regulars, tracks the skaters in their free-flying, free-styling and free-falling grace. In these privileged moments, the film is close to transcendence, defying time, space and gravity.
Full Review
83 out of 100
Universal acclaim
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.