Critic Reviews



Based on 10 critic reviews provided by
The luminaries in “21” pay deserving tribute to Mr. Linklater. Soon, perhaps, so will the Academy
There are great clips and good insight, and it’s all as loose and cool as an Austin night out.
Those who already admire the director may not find a stunning level of insight, and the curious but unindoctrinated would be better served by starting with one his actual films rather than a rundown of them. But there’s a certain satisfaction in a rundown of a career as rich and varied as Linklater’s, not unlike the pleasure of watching a well-edited Oscar tribute reel.
If nothing else, McConaughey's goofball autodidact's intensity certifies that there is, in fact, a "Matthew McConaughey" type of character, and that McConaughey originated it.
Village Voice
The assessments offered in 21 Years manage to feel like too little arriving a little late.
It’s perhaps surprising that there aren’t more Linklater documentaries out there, considering how substantial, influential, and plain f---ing brilliant his body of work is. In the meantime, 21 Years will have to do.
The Dissolve
What keeps 21 Years from feeling roughly that long, in addition to the clips (fun fact: Before Sunset’s ending can inspire tears even when shown out of context, with talking heads chattering over the dialogue), is the occasional offbeat moment during interviews.
An amiable but wholly unnecessary movie that plays like a feature-length version of those reels one watches while eating rubber chicken at a banquet honoring a much-loved artist.
Slant Magazine
Of greatest damage to the doc's coherence is its wholehearted belief that its subjects are offering firsthand reports worth hearing.
21 Years: Richard Linklater makes for a disappointingly hollow hagiography: gushy, superficial and strangely overdue — arriving significantly later than its title prescribes.

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