Julien Donkey-Boy
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In his second directorial effort, writer/director Harmony Korine embraces the hyper-realist aesthetic of Lars Von Trier's Dogma 95 film movement, which mandates handheld photography using only available lighting, among other restrictions. As in the controversial Gummo (1997), Korine abandons traditional narrative for a series of vignettes about bizarre characters, in this case centered on Julien (Ewen Bremner), a schizophrenic who works in a school for the blind. Julien lives at home with his pregnant sister Pearl (Chloe Sevigny); his brother Chris (Evan Neumann), who wrestles in his spare… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 26%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Julien donkey-boy acquires a spiritual dimension that allows it ultimately to become an act of redemption."
‑ Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
"Projects such as Julien exist not to explore the essentials of a film, but to induce in audiences a kind of critical vertigo."
‑ Ana Marie Cox, Salon.com
"The armless cardsharp and the rapping albino are just two of the treasures in this miraculous movie."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"While julien donkey-boy is neither bourgeois nor romantic, it is often unsettlingly funny, though it ultimately recedes into a dark womb of despair."
‑ Paula Nechak, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
"Julien Donkey-Boy, a nihilistic bit of crap that wants to be oh-so-cool but is really just a low-budget exploration of nothing."
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
"A self-indulgent mess."
‑ Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle
"This movie could make you physically ill."
‑ Cole Smithey, ColeSmithey.com
"Most people who see Julien Donkey-Boy will leave the theater disturbed and it will take a special kind of odd-movie aficionado to appreciate the feeling."
‑ Joshua Tanzer, Offoffoff
"Has the look and feel of something unearthed in an archeological dig - a primitive piece of folk art."
‑ Scott Von Doviak, culturevulture.net
"Donkey-Boy exists in an uneasy space between documentary, improvisation, and fictional narrative, and often makes one suspect that Korine may be exploiting his oddball cast."
‑ Robert Payne, Reel.com
"It adds up to something, unlike a lot of movies where individual shots are sensational, but they add up to nothing."
‑ Roger Ebert, At the Movies
"... mostly it just seemed mean, ruthless and designed simply to shock the sensibilities of the squares."
‑ Philip Martin, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
"Julien Donkey-Boy really is an excuse to let Korine go nuts with his jerky video camera as he stitches together a series of completely unrelated and utterly vapid sequences."
‑ Shlomo Schwartzberg, Boxoffice Magazine
"It's disappointing that this film doesn't really have a storyline, because the characters have a lot of potential."
‑ Christabel Padmore, Apollo Guide
"The sophomore directorial effort of Harmony Korine is one steaming, smelly pile of cinematic excrement."
‑ Michael Dequina, TheMovieReport.com
More reviews for Julien Donkey-Boy on Rotten Tomatoes