Rebel Without a Cause
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Rebel Without a Cause
This landmark juvenile-delinquent drama scrupulously follows the classic theatrical disciplines, telling all within a 24-hour period. Teenager Jimmy Stark (James Dean) can't help but get into trouble, a problem that has forced his appearance-conscious parents (Jim Backus and Ann Doran) to move from one town to another. The film's tormented central characters are all introduced during a single night-court session, presided over by well-meaning social worker Ray (Edward Platt). Jimmy, arrested on a drunk-and-disorderly charge, screams "You're tearing me apart!" as his… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"An unmissable film, made with a delirious compassion."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"Like its hero, Rebel Without a Cause desperately wants to say something and doesn't know what it is. If it did know, it would lose its fascination."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Looks and sounds so good it makes your heart thump."
‑ Charlotte O'Sullivan, This is London
"A superb study of teenage angst that still retains its power despite the number of inferior rip-offs that followed in its wake."
‑ Matt Brunson, Creative Loafing
"This full-color, widescreen masterpiece gives us remarkable images."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"Here is a fairly exciting, suspenseful and provocative, if also occasionally far-fetched, melodrama of unhappy youth on another delinquency kick."
‑ Robert J. Landry, Variety
"There are some excruciating flashes of accuracy and truth in this film."
‑ Bosley Crowther, New York Times
"Nicholas Ray's 1955 film extends sympathy to all its characters, not just the kids, though the central trio of Dean, Natalie Wood and Sal Mineo focus our emotions."
‑ Philip Kemp, Total Film
"[VIDEO ESSAY] "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955) is a pivotal film for many reasons - each as important as the next."
‑ Cole Smithey,
"Fine generational drama-tragedy which helped give James Dean movie immortality."
‑ Steve Crum,
"Dean's finest film, hardly surprisingly in that Ray was one of the great '50s directors."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"An indelible vision of a pretty 1950s America with a searing crack in it."
‑ Peter Stack, San Francisco Chronicle
"A mighty, ageless jolt of teen petulance. Dean is supreme."
‑ David Parkinson, Empire Magazine
"1950s James Dean teen-rage landmark still resonates."
‑ Charles Cassady, Common Sense Media
"The drama and hepcat dialogue feel clunky now, but the movie's plea for dads to talk to their children -- what we now call emotional literacy -- is valid enough."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
More reviews for Rebel Without a Cause on Rotten Tomatoes

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