Shadows (1959)

A brother and sister look white and have a brother who is completely black. The sister loses her virginity to a lout who dumps her when she reveals she is part black. The black brother is a singer in a seedy nightclub while his white… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG
Running Time:
Release Date: April 7, 1998
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

This is the only Cassavetes film made without a full script (it grew out of acting improvs), and rarely has so much warmth, delicacy, and raw feeling emerged so naturally and beautifully from performances in an American film.

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J. Hoberman
Village Voice

Arguably the founding work of the American independent cinema.

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Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It's Cassavetes's auspicious debut film as director.

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Derek Adams
Time Out

A very modern, impressionistic snapshot of New York bohemia with scenes linked not by dramatic line but by place, time and mood.

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Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing

Cassavetes' startling debut piece.

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Jeremiah Kipp
Slant Magazine

The Beat generation espoused a rejection of mainstream American values, and John Cassavetes's Shadows feels like a relic from that movement.

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Bosley Crowther
New York Times

Shadows is an unfinished picture in every sense of the word. Yet it is fitfully dynamic, endowed with a raw but vibrant strength, conveying an illusion of being a record of real people, and it is incontestably sincere.

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Emanuel Levy

In this experimental film, Cassavetes' approach and a cast of unknowns brought a new sense of realism to the American cinema.

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Jason Morgan

a cinematic improvisation (as the end credits mention) of amateur vitality

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More reviews for Shadows

Flixster Audience Score: 82% Flixster User Reviews
Bruce Bruce
Don't have much to say about this movie, seems others enjoyed it I did Not. 1 Star 3-2514
Anthony Lawrie
Classic American cinema, way ahead of the rest with an important message to boot. Not only was the subject matter original in film but so was the production.… More
Randy Tippy
A new-waveish beatnik sociopolitical commentary that gets far less recognition than it deserves.
Saskia D.
According to the information that can be found on the box, a very important and influential movie and Cassavetes directorial debut. It's VERY difficult to… More
AJ Verser
This is a pretty good, and very different, drama movie, but it's not all that exciting or intense. Plus, I wasn't familiar or impressed with any of… More
Elvira B
Cassavetes' debut: A close examination of daily life. People wanting to find something to do, striving to understand their moods, shortcomings, and the… More