The Exiles
The Exiles (1961)

The independently produced The Exiles was warmly received at the 1966 Venice Film Festival, then inexplicably fell into obscurity. This is a shame: though made 30 years ago, the issues raised by the film are just as potent and powerful… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: November 17, 2009
Add Your Rating
Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
User Score

Critic Score: 91% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: An historic film, The Exiles combines the realism of social consciousness films with the loosely spun narrative of improvisational features to tell the true story of Native Americans adrift in a derelict neighborhood in Los Angeles, 1960.

Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly

A ghostly and startling tale of Native Americans in Los Angeles -- a fusion of documentary and fiction -- in the late '50s. Never previously released, it's a revelation.

Full review…
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post

Rife with astonishing black-and-white images of an unknown L.A. and clashing sounds of bars, cinemas and poker games, The Exiles is one of those movies that functions as both artifact and fresh discovery.

Full review…
Stuart Klawans
The Nation

It's as if someone had done a ghost dance and it worked, just a little -- enough to turn your sigh into a gasp of amazement.

Full review…
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune

The Exiles ... presents one boozy night in the lives of Homer, Cliff, Tommy and Yvonne, from a convertible joy ride through the Third Street Tunnel, to an early-morning powwow.

Full review…
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

Its moving portraiture is refreshingly free of cliches and moralizing platitudes, and the high-contrast black-and-white photography and dense, highly creative sound track are equally impressive.

Full review…
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express

A sorrowful and beautiful film, the kind you never see from mainstream Tinseltown studios, then or now.

Full review…
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe

Kent Mackenzie's magnificent, long-undistributed, unclassifiable first feature, The Exiles, stands as a rare consideration of the inner and outer lives of American Indians in a big American city.

Full review…
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

A cinéma vérité look at the rootless Native American community that once upon a time lived in Bunker Hill and hung out in downtown bars such as Club Ritz, this Kent Mackenzie film is a brooding picture of a darkly beautiful, long-gone Los Angeles.

Full review…
Dan Lybarger

Kent Mackenzie's 1961 movie 'The Exiles' was so revolutionary that even now it seems gutsy.

Full review…
More reviews for The Exiles

Flixster Audience Score: 70% Flixster User Reviews
Stella Dallas
it is a time capsule of los angeles and a moving portrait of young urban indians in the late 1950s. featuring untrained actors who are startlingly natural and… More
Eric Broome
I don't know how to react to this film. Am I supposed to empathize with these lazy, sluggish Indian men? Aimless, callous, unemployed spongers who do… More
Walter M.
[font=Century Gothic]At its best when photographing the exteriors of a lost city, "The Exiles" is an ethnographic docudrama about a trio of American… More