Universal Pictures | Release Date: February 18, 1994 CRITIC SCORE DISTRIBUTION
Generally favorable reviews based on 26 Critics
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The great thing about Reality Bites is that each of the characters comes across as real, and not some glib concoction by a screenwriter who's watched them from a cloistered distance. Childress obviously knows their world inside out, and shares it with insight and a prickly, original wit. [18 Feb 1994, p.C1]
It's slick, but also heartfelt. It's for those who think it's cool to watch "Brady Bunch" reruns and uncool to watch MTV, and it's got terrific performances by Winona Ryder, Ethan Hawke and Ben Stiller, who also directs this very appealing canter through the vocational and emotional minefields of our downsizing trash culture. [18 Feb 1994, p.33]
The movie ultimately plays as a dead-on snapshot of the much-maligned post-Baby Boomer generation. In 10 years, Reality Bites might seem dated and irrelevant. Right now, it feels remarkably astute. [18 Feb 1994, p.G5]
The first film that comes close to capturing the Bohemian flair and everyman accents of Generation X life while remaining a first-rate piece of entertainment. Stiller and his knowing screenwriter Helen Childress fashioned a wise, very funny film that brightens the slow early going of 1994. [18 Feb 1994, p.6]
Sneakily funny and hopelessly romantic, Reality Bites speaks with the distinctive, ironic voice that marks it as The Graduate of Generation X. [18 Feb 1994, p.03]
St. Louis Post-DispatchHarper Barnes
Ultimately, what saves this movie is its sense of humor, not to mention its good humor, which is not the same thing. You find yourself rooting for these characters, although at times you wouldn't mind giving them a little slap up side the head. [18 Feb 1994, p.3F]