Sling Blade Image
Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 26 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 75 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A southern gothic tale about a man named Karl (Thornton), who's just been released from an asylum -- some 25 years after he committed a gruesome crime. He returns to the southern town of his youth, where his quiet, gentle manner and simple charm land him a job and lead him to an unlikelyA southern gothic tale about a man named Karl (Thornton), who's just been released from an asylum -- some 25 years after he committed a gruesome crime. He returns to the southern town of his youth, where his quiet, gentle manner and simple charm land him a job and lead him to an unlikely friendship with a young boy (Black) and his widowed mother. When the mother's abusive boyfriend appears, however, this simple man is thrust into a combustible dilemma that has powerful, moving consequences for all. (Miramax Films) Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. A story that's startling, soulful and absolutely unforgettable.
  2. 100
    Like the eloquent, darkly funny dialogue, the film's characters, setting and cadences draw us into its world, with all its terrors and tenderness. What emerges is a masterpiece of Southern storytelling that draws a sharp line between good and evil.
  3. Perhaps the most remarkable thing here is Thornton's nuanced performance, but the film has other rare virtues: all the characters are fully and richly fleshed out (with some unexpected turns by John Ritter and singer Dwight Yoakam), and the story's construction is carefully measured.
  4. Reviewed by: Richard T. Jameson
    87
    What evolves among them is a kind of realistic fairy tale, sustained by the sweet gravity and guttural, deadpan minimalism of Thornton's performance.
  5. Reviewed by: John Hartl
    80
    (Thornton) does a remarkable job in all three categories, but what you're likely to remember most clearly is his performance.
  6. 75
    Builds slowly but passionately, not dancing to some Hollywood tune, but finding its characters where they are and letting them be who they are.
  7. Thornton is sadly affecting in the film's central role.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 38
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 38
  3. Negative: 0 out of 38
  1. WiggyMan
    Dec 22, 2005
    10
    Amazing performances, great story. Billy Bob is a freak of the highest proportions :)
  2. Aug 24, 2013
    10
    A masterful script. Outstanding acting Thorton is spellbinding in the lead role. His opening scene is without doubt the best I've seen.ThisA masterful script. Outstanding acting Thorton is spellbinding in the lead role. His opening scene is without doubt the best I've seen.This is storytelling at its finest and directed with confidence, conviction and ease. Light and shade, humour and a fierce undercurrent of tension. To every film fan watch it now! Expand
  3. lj
    Sep 23, 2006
    10
    i just seen the movie. Awesome, never thought i would get inot a movie like this. Awesome, i just hate i am just now seeing it.
  4. May 4, 2014
    10
    Billy Bob Thornton succesfully makes himself a centre of this film : a director, a screenwriter and a leading role, but you will clearlyBilly Bob Thornton succesfully makes himself a centre of this film : a director, a screenwriter and a leading role, but you will clearly remember one of those, an extraordinary performance. A tagline : "Sometimes a hero comes from the most unlikely place." may has a different point of view, beautiful and dark come up, but it's nothing to do to this film. This film makes Southern storytelling / drama genre more powerful and stronger. Expand
  5. Jan 24, 2015
    10
    The acting of Billy Bob Thornton was of such a high standard that my only impression was (in the dark room with the journalist) was thatThe acting of Billy Bob Thornton was of such a high standard that my only impression was (in the dark room with the journalist) was that Billy Bob was born to act, no other gift was better expressed. The movie had me in tears, it was a subtle performance, it is a sophisticated performance it is a human tale of suffering and just being despite how the world tries to label Expand
  6. Dec 23, 2013
    9
    This movie made me think about different starting points we have. How we break some chains and how do we act in different circumstances. MovieThis movie made me think about different starting points we have. How we break some chains and how do we act in different circumstances. Movie had it's darker elements and it's up-lifters which were directed plausible. Billy Bob Thornton did a fantastic job. A very good movie. Expand
  7. Nov 28, 2012
    8
    Featuring (quite possibly) Billy Bob Thornton's best performance in a film, "Sling Blade" is a simple, yet emotive drama with as much humor asFeaturing (quite possibly) Billy Bob Thornton's best performance in a film, "Sling Blade" is a simple, yet emotive drama with as much humor as it has heart. Expand

See all 38 User Reviews

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