It's been 21 years since Dazed and Confused debuted and solidified Richard Linklater's status as one of America's top independent directors. The Austin-based filmmaker first made waves in 1991 with Slacker, a wholly original film that went on the influence pretty much every indie director out there, from Kevin Smith to the Duplass Brothers. While Slacker got the attention of Hollywood, it was Dazed that captured audiences, and while it wasn't a box-office success, it did quickly gain a cult following. Two decades later, Matthew McConaughey — who made his acting debut in the movie — might still be most famous for his signature line, "Alright, alright, alright."
Linklater has continued to make relatable, quotable films, from Before Sunrise to School of Rock, to this year's phenomenal Boyhood. His movies are rooted in the ordinary, but far from boring. And, in the new documentary, 21 Years: Richard Linklater (now available to stream on iTunes), some of Hollywood's biggest stars — from McConaughey to Jack Black — pay tribute to the director. Linklater may not make blockbusters (the Before trilogy, they like to joke, may just be the lowest grossing trilogy in film history), but his are those precious movies that have the power to change your life — or, at the very least, get you thinking.
Ahead, 10 classic quotes from Linklater's films that perfectly capture the strangeness and beauty of being human.