A meditation on the ways that art and technology flow into each other.
Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly
For a film geek this movie is absolute heaven, a dream symposium in which directors, cinematographers, editors and a few actors gather to opine on the details of their craft.
A.O. Scott - New York Times
Alas, if you're someone who enjoys movies as, say, a two-hour escape, you may find this documentary on the death of film at digital's hands a bit too inside baseball.
Scott Bowles - USA Today
You can feel the future, even if some of what you feel is worrying.
Wesley Morris - Boston Globe
Even disinterested viewers will have complicated feelings about the aesthetic, practical, and philosophical questions director Chris Kenneally poses about his subject.
Michelle Orange - Village Voice
Film enthusiasts especially will appreciate this wonky but fascinating documentary about the process of making movies.
Joe Neumaier - New York Daily News
The situation is fascinating, and given an illuminating investigation here.
John Anderson - Wall Street Journal
A trim, informative 99-minute primer on celluloid film, which to many viewers has a warmth and feel as soothing as buttered popcorn, and the brave new world of digital cinema.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
It's this simple: If you like movies, you need to see "Side by Side."
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
Although laid out with such clarity that any layperson could catch the gist of what's being discussed, Side by Side is not afraid to get nitty-gritty about more technical matters.
Leslie Felperin - Variety
A surprisingly accessible documentary about an often very technical subject - the revolution surrounding Hollywood's rapid conversion from 35mm film to digital technologies.
Lou Lumenick - New York Post
Side By Side works as well as it does by celebrating the filmmaking practice as a distinctive art form no matter what process it uses to make images into motion.
Eric Kohn - indieWIRE
An engrossing and detailed crash course on the digital revolution.
Jordan Mintzer - Hollywood Reporter
Keanu Reeves is an astute and witty interviewer in Chris Kenneally's vital film. No true movie junkie is going to want to miss Side by Side.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
"Side by Side" is a handy overview of recent seismic changes occurring within the industry and unexpectedly essential viewing.
Mark Olsen - Los Angeles Times
...could have used more movie-specific discussions of the aesthetic implications of celluloid versus digital.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
The documentary would have been that much better with a more explicit focus on why the average filmgoer should care.
David Wiegand - San Francisco Chronicle
Side By Side is a riveting, under-the-hood distillation of 100 years of Hollywood experimentation, innovation and expensive bravery.
Graham Young - Birmingham Post
Keanu Reeves proves a surprisingly engaging host for this documentary inquiry into the ongoing transition from celluloid to digital filmmaking.
Alistair Harkness - Scotsman
Essential viewing for understanding different sides of one of the most vital current debates in cinema.
Catherine Bray - Film4
At once a celebration of new technology and a lamentation of a passing one, Side by Side is oddly depressing to watch.
Miles Fielder - The List
It asks questions about culture and technology, the creation of a new sensibility, and whether we're looking at the debasement of values or a new democracy coming to the arts.
Philip French - Observer [UK]
This is route-one stuff.No serious film enthusiast will, however, want to miss Side by Side.
Tara Brady - Irish Times
Maybe this geekily precise, Keanu Reeves-fronted documentary fretting over the death of celluloid needs to give digital its due.
Keanu Reeves is a game frontman of this fact-filled, slightly chaotic doc about the rise of digital technology in film.
Dave Calhoun - Time Out
It's sweet and sparkling, as glassfuls of thought are provided by James Cameron, Martin Scorsese, George Lucas, David Lynch, Steven Soderbergh and other champagne cinematic cerebra.
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
A riveting, informative and extremely entertaining documentary about the digital vs celluloid debate that's a must-see for anyone interested in films and filmmaking.
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
Side by Side delves into areas too niche to entice the casual cinemagoer, but nevertheless this really is essential viewing for movie fans.
Simon Reynolds - Digital Spy
With film labs closing down and new formats springing up all the time, this is a timely stock-take of 21st Century cinema.
Simon Kinnear - Total Film
The movie doesn't offer much consideration of digital video as an esthetic in its own right -- as something that is valuable because it is *distinctive* from film, rather than as a format that aspires to be *indistinguishable* from film.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Probing documentary on the history of film that's geared for techies, those in the film industry, geeks or film junkies.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
This exhaustive documentary is one of the best films ever made about the filmmaking process.
Adam Ross - The Aristocrat
Actors such as Robert Downey Jr. complain that because digital cameras can be reloaded in seconds, there is no time for performers to hang out in their trailers between takes (in protest, he urinated in jars, which he hid all over the sets of Zodiac).
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
Possibly only of value to true cinephiles, but it's a vital education on the highs and lows of film vs. digital as the medium moves into an exciting new direction of creative access and picture clarity.
Brian Orndorf - Blu-ray.com
Side by Side doesn't give too much weight to either half of the debate, correctly noting that the move to digital has both pros and cons while offering a rather detailed history of how we got here.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
Delights in bringing us all onto the set, into the editing room and behind the camera--thrilling places in any format.
Matt Pais - RedEye
The pro-digital propaganda feel is a major detraction
Vadim Rizov - Boxoffice Magazine
Anyone who is interested in the history of film technology and cinema can certainly take something away from Side by Side, even if it is just learning the opinion of Robert Rodriguez or Danny Boyle.
Chelsey Grasso - Paste Magazine
I appreciate [Reeves'] interest and passion on the subject, and his interview style is fine -- the conversations he finds himself engaged in with the Wachowski's especially is worth watching it for alone.
Rob Boylan - Orlando Weekly
There is great flux in this world, as Side by Side so entertainingly demonstrates, and where it's all headed is both discomforting and exhilarating. Stay tuned.
Peter Rainer - Christian Science Monitor
Obviously the issues discussed in Side by Side are provocative, and the film allows viewers to have their own opinion as much as its filmmaker subjects do.
Fred Topel - CraveOnline
A film about film that matters -- one that ably sums up an art form, where we've been and where we're going.
Brent Simon - Shared Darkness
Always accessible, the doc lays out pros and cons of each medium.
Ben Kenigsberg - Time Out Chicago
A documentary film that asks the sort of questions most major film studios don't want asked or answered.
James Verniere - Boston Herald
Fascinating combination of the technical and the aesthetic. The best exhibition to date of the digital revolution in filmmaking.
Ron Wilkinson - Monsters and Critics
The digital takeover of contemporary movie-making may not be a hot topic around the American water cooler, but in Side by Side it is revealed as a large and fascinating subject.
Kurt Loder - Reason Online
An unapologetically serious, geek-friendly documentary, it talks pixels, grain, depth of field and other technical concerns with a variety of directors, cinematographers, special-effects wizards and more.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
"Side by Side" is a kind of eulogy for celluloid, beginning with some of the most famous images committed to film: "A Trip to the Moon," "Citizen Kane," "The Wizard of Oz."
John Hartl - Seattle Times
Must-see documentary teeming with commentary largely from digital-savvy top industry players follows theatrical film's journey from celluloid origins to late 20th-century digital innovations through to the triumphant digital changeover in progress.
Doris Toumarkine - Film Journal International
Essential viewing for anyone who wants to understand where filmmaking has come from and where it's going..informative, entertaining and thought-provoking at the same time.
Marshall Fine - Hollywood & Fine
The film is about how the digital revolution has changed the ways moviemakers capture, edit, and manipulate images, and it gets practically every famous, relevant person on the record.
Noel Murray - AV Club
Absolutely mind-expanding look at the borderlines/tension between analog and digital in the movie world with an amazing who's who of directors involved with the transition.
Louis Proyect - rec.arts.movies.reviews
Ever wonder what would happen if Keanu Reeves met David Lynch?
Keith Uhlich - Time Out
In Side by Side, editor Walter Murch states, "In a way, film was the church of the 20th century." But the church of film is shutting its doors. Stained glass is being replaced by digital imagery. A new religion is on its relentless way.
Tony Macklin - tonymacklin.net
Overall, though, Side by Side is a smoothly assembled, eminently watchable feature that efficiently summarizes the recent past, and possible future, of film.
Ethan Alter - Television Without Pity
Side by Side is not a dry polemic, nor is it an advocacy statement; that's what I admire most about it.
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
something I'd be happy to get into a jovial shouting match about over pints, but [not] for the length of a feature film.
A must-see for AV geeks and cinephiles - even die-hard celluloid fans.
Betsy Sherman - Boston Phoenix
A serviceable primer on the digital-celluloid divide in commercial cinema, if a bit unwieldy in scope and in danger of being made obsolete by the next version of the RED camera.
Bill Weber - Slant Magazine
[Keanu] Reaves has the top filmmakers in the world giving their two-cents on a subject near and dear to me.
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
After seeing "Side By Side," you may never watch a movie quite the same way again.
Laura Clifford - Reeling Reviews
Propelled forward by a determination on Kenneally's part to keep things fluid and fascinating rather than argumentative and academic, Side by Side is top-tier festival fodder and a must-own DVD item for any film buff.
Simon Foster - Screen-Space
Kenneally smartly takes a straightforward and informative spin on the technology and punctuates his interviews with a fine selection of film extracts.
Mark Adams - Screen International
A wonky gabfest for film buffs ... you're bound to learn something
Kent Turner - Film-Forward.com