Heavy Traffic
Heavy Traffic (1973)

Heavy Traffic represents a follow-up to animator Ralph Bakshi's first feature film, Fritz the Cat (1972). The central character is Michael, the ingenuous son of an Italian father and Jewish mother. An aspiring cartoonist, Michael leaves… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 1973
DVD Release Date: September 5, 2000
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Critic Score: 89% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Jay Cocks
TIME Magazine

Heavy Traffic not only has an authentic tenement toughness but the rough feeling of unassimilated autobiography, of experiences and fantasies still keenly felt.

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Roger Greenspun
New York Times

A cruel, funny, heartbreaking love note to a city kept alive by its freaks, and always, always dying.

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Keith Phipps
The Dissolve

It's a downbeat, dark fantasia of urban life from a filmmaker trying to understand the darkness of the moment before it slipped away.

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Variety Staff

There's something to offend everyone in this melange of crudely conceived, amateurishly animated stuff.

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Don Druker
Chicago Reader

Bakshi manages to offend nearly everyone from transvestites to mafiosi; but the comic distancing achieved by his army of animators manages to bring off a most difficult kind of humor: the humor of pain and despair.

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TV Guide

Filled with autobiographical resonance and razor-edged humor, this is a cynical portrait of one young man's coming of age.

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Time Out

The quality of the animation is cornflake packet standard, the script -- one or two minor moments excepted -- a disaster.

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Mike McGranaghan
Aisle Seat

Heavy Traffic may be a bit dated in terms of its distinct '70s tone, but that doesn't make it any less fascinating. If you're a fan of the animation genre, this certainly qualifies as essential viewing.

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Rob Gonsalves

A zesty abstract-jazz riff of a film.

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More reviews for Heavy Traffic

Flixster Audience Score: 76% Flixster User Reviews
Greg S
The life of an unemployed underground cartoonist who lives with his shrewish mother and mobbed-up dad and lusts after a saucy Nubian bartender, told in a… More
Mike T.
This film doesn't have the same cohesiveness or power as Bakshi's later work, Coonskin, but it's still an impressive vision. The influence of… More
Tim Salmons
To me, there's always been the Ralph Bakshi movie that everybody has seen (The Lord of the Rings) and then there are the rest that nobody has seen. Heavy… More
Aj V
A great animated film from Bakshi. It combines cartoon and live action actually. Plus, the story is really good, in that 70s realistic gritty style. I really… More