Mixed or average reviews - based on 26 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 67 Ratings

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  • Summary: The city stands on the brink of social, economic, and environmental disaster. Southland Tales is an epic story set over the course of three days that culminate in a massive 4th of July celebration. A large ensemble cast of characters includes Boxer Santaros, an action star stricken with amnesia; Krysta Now, an adult-film star developing her own reality-television project; and Roland Taverner, a Hermosa Beach police officer who holds the key to a vast conspiracy. (Samuel Goldwyn Films) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 26
  2. Negative: 10 out of 26
  1. Funny, audacious, messy and feverishly inspired look at America and its discontents.
  2. 70
    In its willful, self-involved eccentricity, Southland Tales is really something else. Kelly's movie may not be entirely coherent, but that's because there's so much it wants to say.
  3. 63
    Richard Kelly's Southland Tales isn't just a movie. It's an apocalyptic piñata that's been bazooka-ed open.
  4. Love it or laugh at it, you will gaze on Southland Tales with awe.
  5. Southland Tales does have enough energy and audacity to suggest significant potential. But was it ready for public consumption? The answer is no. It's as simple as that.
  6. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Rarely has a picture been so self-consciously designed to be a culturally meaningful touchstone, and fallen so woefully short, as Southland Tales.
  7. 0
    If a more incoherent and self-indulgent movie has been released so far this century, I'm not aware of it.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 44
  2. Negative: 11 out of 44
  1. May 9, 2014
    One of the best movies/soundtracks you will most likely never watch or hear. It's a satire dramedy about modern America and the commercialism/control of its people. Go in with an open mind and you will enjoy the heck out of this film. Expand
  2. Jun 13, 2012
    When I saw it in 2008 I was very confused and didn't get it at all. Why would Richard Kelly (the maker of Donnie Darko) make such a mess of a film? I was puzzled and it stayed in the back of my mind till I saw 'The Box' again. For this second viewing I thoroughly preparded myself: I read all 3 prequel comic books (330p.) and I read some internet explanations. Basically the Southland Tales is a liberal interpretation/rewrite of the Book of Revelations (which hails the second comming of christ and the end of the world) mixed in with modern pop culture and social/political critisism. The biggest fault of this film probably is that it tries to cram in so much that you cannot possibly get it all in one viewing. And those graphics novels realy ARE the first part of the movie. If you read those in MUCH easier to understand and follow the story coz you already know the characters and their backstory and you better understand why certain things happen and why they say and do things. If you can find (and read) those comics and give this film another go you will like it much more and appreciate the strange humor Kelly put in this complex satire...have a nice Apocalypse ;) Expand
  3. Feb 21, 2011
    Sarah Michelle Gellar Does A Great Job As Krysta Now...... BUT Most Of The Cast Including "The Rock" Were Pretty Bad Actors..... Although I Really Did Enjoy The Story Line... I Give This Movie A 7 Expand
  4. Aug 23, 2010
    Not nearly as disastrous as the critics say, I can't really call it great or even that good, but I can call it imaginative, interesting and very ambitious. OK it fails in many of it's goals, one joke about the future being more futuristic I particularly despised, but at least it was new, fun and somewhat entertaining. It was incoherent and messy, and the plot wasn't as well done as say Pulp Fiction but I still appreciated it for what it's tried to be. Expand
  5. Aug 27, 2010
    why, why, why, why, why?
    Note to directors: if you're going to film whatever **** flies through your brain, at least have the common decency
    to make the final product less than 2 hours. That being said, it was probably the most well-acted roles I had seen by most of the big-name actors in the movie (most notably Justin Timberlake). But still, why!? Expand

See all 44 User Reviews


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