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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 23.71%
Average: 1.03%
Pretty Bad: 2.06%
Total Crap: 28.87%

4 reviews, 73 user ratings

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by Chris Parry

"If Korine wasn't such a shithead, we'd be calling him genius."
4 stars

Sorry folks, I know popular opinion is that Harmony Korine is a pretentious, lying, untalented slab o'fetid meat, but the fact of the matter is that if he wasn't such a fuckknuckle, we'd be comparing him to the much less noisy, just as enigmatic and hard to understand David Lynch as an erratic artiste. Okay, so Kids was a crock, but at least it tried to do something different, you've got to give it that much. But with Gummo, Korine demonstrates that unlike in the days of Deliverance where the inbred hillbilly's lived tucked out of the way in the deep woods, as we approach the new millenium they've taken to the suburbs.

How much of this is Korine's fantasy world and how much is real? Who are the actors and who are the shirtless and shoeless freaks who just happened to be passing a camera? What does it all mean? Does it mean anything?

Forget any theory on plot. There's no plot here. Gummo is a series of grabs of the worst that Korine assesses American society has to offer, and despite the lack of storyline or big finish, the flick does manage to leave an impression. It's disturbing shit, not likely to bring forth a pleasant opinion from the casual viewer, but to someone looking hard for originality and new concepts, Gummo is a find.

Filled with characters that range fron a shirtless accordion playing skateboarding boy in big pink rabbit ears, to a young girl who wants to be Burt Reynolds, to an eyebrow shaving spazzo, to a black midget, there's nobody here you'd admit to knowing, but you've seen them around. They're the ones you get dirty looks from as you pass them coming out of the liquor store. They're those ratty kids at the end of the street who always look like they're about to steal your car. They're trash of the white variety, and as education standards drop and parenting standards nosedive, they become closer and closer to the norm.

It's said that it takes a certain level of insanity to reach the levels of genius. Harmony Korine definitely has the nuttiness, but the genius may be some way off yet.

Let's be straight, Korine is a total nutbar. He's lost any grip he ever had on reality and lives in his own little fantasy world, but in that world, this stuff makes sense to him. Just as we can watch Lynch's Lost Highway or Eraserhead and not have a clue what's going on, but enjoy the visions and streaming consciousness for their uniquity regardless, so too can someone who doesn't demand a traditional storyline sit back and enjoy the tourist ride of the national underbelly that is Gummo. It means nothing, it goes nowhere, but it makes you realise that not everybody holds sanity as sacred.

There is no world like this, where all folks are freaks and nobody has the slightest use for the brain they were born with. But there are people like that in our world, and when you're walked through their universe, it ain't a pleasant journey.

Just thank god their welfare cheques aren't large enough for them to own computers.

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originally posted: 11/02/99 03:36:59
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User Comments

11/22/14 Mark Gummo's one of the best films I've seen: powerful, uncompromising, ultimately heartbreaking 5 stars
1/11/12 Samson If you do not see the chaotic beauty in Gummo, you and I will never agree on anything. 5 stars
8/25/11 louise what a load of crap 1 stars
12/03/10 Colton Bose A brilliant debut from one of the only true geniuses at work in modern cinema. 5 stars
8/10/10 Chad Dillon Cooper Pseudo documentary about inbread mutants in Ohio. 4 stars
5/04/10 J There's an in-between of Hollywood films and this crap..Shocking doesn't auto. mean good 1 stars
3/20/10 dancing lizard lasting trauma effects feeling/being lost, forgotten, dirty, w/o direction 4 stars
3/07/10 SmoothEdgy Appease your shadow! Watch this film! 5 stars
2/19/10 Dave Schniedberg Harmony korine is an aboslute moron. meaningless art. infer all you want, its accidental. 1 stars
11/04/09 a random girl one of the weirdest and most interesting movies i've seen. 0.o 4 stars
4/20/09 belike This movie reminds me of blue velvet. 4 stars
4/20/09 mr.mike Strangely fascinating but the endless parade of oddballs eventually becomes tiresome. 3 stars
4/02/09 Anonymous. i was surprised i liked this... 4 stars
12/01/08 Chunga not enough stars to movie ever !!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
1/02/08 Tiffiny This movie, although disturbing, was amazing. Gods forgotten children. The realism of life. 5 stars
6/14/07 Sugarfoot Offensive not because of its content but because of it's unwatchability factor. 1 stars
1/22/07 buckwheat korine nurtures it out of the womb and feeds it bacon. he weeps for the bastard child. 5 stars
8/26/06 M. Mirliss A buffet of memorable scenes a unique and brilliant cinematic voice of our time. 5 stars
6/01/06 molly People aren't seeing the point of this film. It shows reality and uniquness. 5 stars
5/25/06 andrew great movie should be a sequel 5 stars
12/18/05 Jintan Mental Syrup of Ipecac. 1 stars
6/10/05 peroxide harm is genius 5 stars
4/05/05 EclecticEnnui I love it. 4 stars
1/02/05 Chris This movie is so self important and shallow not to mention bad that its funny 1 stars
11/29/04 Ur Reviewer Sux A marvelous piece of art. To understand itn 5 stars
10/26/04 Jon It's just some fucking NYC kid's false perception of what middle America is like. 1 stars
10/09/04 Zach Good film, takes a brain and open mind to enjoy! 5 stars
8/17/04 Gabriel saw this movie high, thought it still sucked. 2 stars
8/11/04 safri 'break(ing) the waves & dance(r) in the dark-rock on harmony! 5 stars
7/26/04 Christopher Moore Love it or hate it, it's not about Xenia, Ohio. A culmination of all small towns. 4 stars
6/22/04 neubauten Harmony Korine is a no talent turd and people who think he's deep are so fucking deluded 1 stars
4/20/04 coreyhaim I wouldn't even give it one star if I wasn't being FORCED! This movie is ass! 1 stars
4/19/04 Jack Sommersby Like Korine's-written "Kids", it confuses grittiness with "truth". 1 stars
2/26/04 Agadil Truly and deeply one of the best films I have ever seen. Amazing. 5 stars
11/24/02 heather go beyound the boundries. god dammit. 5 stars
11/18/02 alex aeQea ariumn humans rule 5 stars
10/08/02 chris listen to the director's comments on the'll at least understand what he's doing 5 stars
9/30/02 James Superb originality, korine's off at a great start 5 stars
9/27/02 division_joy harmony korine should be dismembered and burned for this shit 1 stars
5/30/02 JD without a doubt, the absolute worst movie ever made. Korine is a worthless sack of shit. 1 stars
4/04/02 John Freedom The movie is very close to the experience of my childhood. I grew up in a place like that. 5 stars
3/11/02 Brad Streep This film makes my nippples HARD! I LOVE IT! 5 stars
12/03/01 Caiphn Well I love my little rooster and my rooster loves me 5 stars
11/16/01 Rufus McGunner GAG! Total and complete Horseshit! 1 stars
9/24/01 Elgyn I never get tired of this movie. A classic. 5 stars
9/12/01 Rob Banfitch a unique movie that defies convention and holds you the whole way through 5 stars
5/10/01 Ro Disturbing and brilliant 4 stars
4/27/01 WhiteGutterTrash This Movie was a sick and evil joy ride...!!! 5 stars
4/08/01 Toktela Finally some originality 5 stars
2/27/01 perverted pixie Ugly, beautiful...Maltin opinions are dinosaur. Haters of this film are voidoids... 5 stars
2/25/01 Rob Banfitch a mishmash of erratic genius 5 stars
2/21/01 Rocket Boy Ugggggggh 1 stars
11/14/00 MiS^DeMeAnOr disturbing with a few amusing parts 2 stars
10/25/00 Jacob Smith One of the most important film's of our time. A piece of pure mastery. 5 stars
10/15/00 fm hmmmmm..... 4 stars
8/04/00 daymia kelley alive, dynamic, different stab at white trash rural life. 5 stars
7/26/00 Basil Sooo weird I just had to go out and buy it. 5 stars
12/28/99 Bigs Obvious raw talent 5 stars
11/05/99 will an interesting trip that goes nowhere but the scenery is nice. pretty nifty. 4 stars
10/24/99 kim Had my best laugh of the week! The last line of Jonny Angel's review. Wonderful and apt! 1 stars
10/21/99 Annah Integrity all the way 5 stars
9/17/99 strike Nothing happens, but still a strangely intruiging piece of Americana. 4 stars
7/14/99 machine disturbing but very cool 5 stars
7/03/99 Arlene childishly sadistic - moron with a camera 1 stars
6/19/99 mr. peepers You say potato, I say genius.... 5 stars
4/15/99 Jon Jackson My god this movie is like two bags of shit! 1 stars
1/02/99 tarkin666 Whipping dead cats is good clean fun. 5 stars
12/09/98 Shadow Raider Don't waste your last moment on this shit. Pretentious trash for everybody! 1 stars
11/22/98 Miss Elaineous Awesome, the funniest movie I've seen in a long time ! 5 stars
11/01/98 Bad Kosh If you watch that shit, don't say I didn't warn you, 'cuz it sucks crap. 1 stars
8/31/98 Harrison Long Let my suffering be a warning to you, do not waste a moment of you life on this shit 1 stars
8/31/98 Mister Whoopee Korine is a hack. A no talent. Pretentious shit. 1 stars
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  17-Oct-1997 (R)



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