The Slaughter Rule (2002)

R   |    |  Drama, Sport

The Slaughter Rule (2002) Poster

A young man finds solace with a young woman, his mother, and a high-school football coach who recruits him to quarterback a six-man team.

Add this title to your Watchlist
Save movies and shows to keep track of what you want to watch.




  • Alex Smith and Andrew J. Smith at an event for The Slaughter Rule (2002)
  • Alex Smith and Andrew J. Smith at an event for The Slaughter Rule (2002)
  • Alex Smith and Andrew J. Smith at an event for The Slaughter Rule (2002)
  • Ryan Gosling in The Slaughter Rule (2002)
  • Alex Smith and Andrew J. Smith at an event for The Slaughter Rule (2002)
  • Ryan Gosling in The Slaughter Rule (2002)

See all photos

More of What You Love

Find what you're looking for even quicker with the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review

User Reviews

14 January 2003 | B24
| Underrated Effort
As a subscriber to Sundance Channel, I am intrigued by recurrent programming patterns in the films shown. Recently, for example, there has been a spate of male-oriented psycho-sexual dramas that go deeply into themes usually represented in mainstream cinema as subconscious or accidental phenomena.

In The Slaughter Rule as well as other recent offerings like L.I.E. or Priest or Taboo (originally Gohatto), characters reveal emotions that seem designed specifically to break new ground in the amorphic area between ordinary storytelling and what some would call pornography. The common word to describe this is "disturbing." But just as Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Midnight Cowboy, and Harold and Maude opened people's eyes in the 60's and 70's to the possibilities of "disturbing" cinema as literature, these new films may lead in my view to an entirely new public attitude about the inherent validity of the effort.

To be sure, The Slaughter Rule is a flawed film. So are many others of its kind to date. Its premise, however, is sound. One can nitpick about cinematic values, geographical anomalies, or plot distractions, etc., but to be able to see disparate fictional characters get under each other's skin is what makes any drama come to life. Added to that in this case is a very competent job of producing, directing, and editing. Moreover, no one can quarrel with the acting performance of David Morse.

Coming to grips with overtly sexual themes in films -- particularly those that deal seriously with "disturbing" but very real kinds of human emotions -- is a challenging task not only for moviemakers like the Smiths, but also for viewers. I give this movie an "E" for effort and a solid 9 out of 10 for everything else.

Metacritic Reviews

Critic Reviews

More Like This

  • The United States of Leland

    The United States of Leland

  • The Believer

    The Believer

  • Murder by Numbers

    Murder by Numbers

  • Stay


  • Lars and the Real Girl

    Lars and the Real Girl

  • Half Nelson

    Half Nelson

  • All Good Things

    All Good Things

  • Fracture


  • The Ides of March

    The Ides of March

  • Remember the Titans

    Remember the Titans

  • Gangster Squad

    Gangster Squad

  • Blue Valentine

    Blue Valentine


Plot Summary


Drama | Sport

The 'Someone Great' Stars Plead Guilty to Movie Clichés

"The IMDb Show" sits down with the stars of Someone Great to find out if they are guilty or not guilty of some of our favorite breakup movie tropes.

Watch now

Featured on IMDb

Check out our guide to superheroes, horror movies, and more.

Around The Web


Powered by ZergNet

More To Explore

Search on