6.6/10
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158 user 51 critic

Reality Bites (1994)

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2:12 | Trailer
A documentary filmmaker and her fellow Gen X graduates face life after college, looking for work and love in Houston.

Director:

Ben Stiller

Writer:

Helen Childress
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Popularity
4,560 ( 1,978)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Winona Ryder ... Lelaina Pierce
Ethan Hawke ... Troy Dyer
Janeane Garofalo ... Vickie Miner
Steve Zahn ... Sammy Gray
Ben Stiller ... Michael Grates
Swoosie Kurtz ... Charlane McGregor
Harry O'Reilly ... Wes McGregor
Susan Norfleet Susan Norfleet ... Helen Anne Pierce
Joe Don Baker ... Tom Pierce
Renée Zellweger ... Tami (as Renee Zellweger)
James Rothenberg James Rothenberg ... Rick
John Mahoney ... Grant Gubler
Eric Morgan Stuart Eric Morgan Stuart ... Damien (as Eric Stuart)
Barry Del Sherman ... Grant's Producer (as Barry Sherman)
Chelsea Lagos ... Troy Groupie
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Storyline

In this study of Generation X manners, Lelaina, the valedictorian of her college class, camcords her friends in a mock documentary of posteducation life. Troy is her best friend, a perpetually unemployed musical slacker. Vickie is a manager at the Gap who worries about the results of an AIDS test, while Sammy has problems grappling with his sexuality. When Lelaina meets Michael, an earnest video executive who takes her homemade video to his MTV-like station, she must decide what she values--the materialism of yuppie Michael or the philosophical musings of Troy. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A comedy about love in the '90s.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language, drug content and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 February 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Reality Bites See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,113,050, 20 February 1994

Gross USA:

$20,982,557

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$33,351,557
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lelaina sabotages Grant Gubler's program by tampering with his cue cards. At the beginning of the film, when delivering her Valedictorian speech at the Graduation ceremony, she herself experiences some cue card trouble, the end of her speech has gone missing ("The answer is.... I don't know.") See more »

Goofs

When the group is smoking pot with a pop can, there are two different cans used. See more »

Quotes

Vickie Miner: I'm late for a jean-folding seminar. Let's locomote!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Australian print only runs 94 minutes, and most notably actors Kevin Pollak and Jeanne Tripplehorn do not appear. See more »


Soundtracks

Add It Up
Written by Gordon Gano
Performed by Ethan Hawke, Jack Irons, Nathan December, Christopher Wagner
Produced by Michael Beinhorn
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Reality or not?
13 July 2004 | by IdolprincessSee all my reviews

I rented this movie knowing it wasn't really a comedy but a drama about the life of people in their early twenties in the 90's. What pushed me to rent it was the fact that many people qualified this film as horrible, but many other people loved this film and were talking about it like it was the most realistic thing ever.

Let's face it. I'm not going to pretend to know what it's like to be a teenager/young adult in the 90's since I was 9 years old when this movie came out. However, I think I have a good enough judgement to tell if this movie was realistic or not based on my personal experiences.

This movie isn't specially about the 90's, it's about "becoming an adult" and all it implies. It's about a cast of characters who hesitate between forever living what they were told is a pointless life [always having fun and bumming around] and becoming like the adults that they have criticized so much in their childhood. This, by itself, is very realistic, because it's a problem that many young people face even today. The main character Lalaina represents this fact completely. She's shooting a video of her friends as they struggle to find themselves in this world that was built by baby-boomers that they can't relate to. Also, she's a very clean-cut and hard working person, yet she hangs out with her friends who are more of the "rebellious" type.

This movie tries to represent the "alternative" crowd. Each character in this movie has an "alternative" as well as a "conformist" side, which is very strange. By example, you have a female character who wears vintage clothes and lives in a typical artsy room but works at the gap. This is another side of what was mentioning earlier. As young adults, they're straying away from the whole "alternative-ness" of their teenage years. This is something I've seen among people I know as well, and that I personally dislike. I guess it's something very typical of our era as well as the 90's.

What I found unrealistic in this movie was that the characters seem a bit cliché sometimes. Sure, I've seen people like that. But the personalities in the movie are too simplified. By example, there's the guy who always is slacking around doing nothing because he feels that having a full-time job until you retire is like wasting your life. Okay, but what else? What type of person is this guy, really? Also.. Each of the characters seem to act the way they do because they come from broken homes, which isn't very realistic in my opinion... The video that the main character has made is supposed to make their viewers know her friends and herself, but we don't really get to know them by watching the entire movie.

Overall, I thought it was an enjoyable movie. I liked the atmosphere of it. It also wasn't always predictable. I gave this movie a 7 because I liked it even though I disliked some of it's aspects.


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