Skateland

MTV has released the official movie trailer for Anthony Burns‘s feature film directorial debut with Skateland, which premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival . Skateland is a coming-of-age story which takes place in the early 1980s in small-town East Texas. Dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating rink manager named Ritchie (played by Deadgirl‘s Shiloh Fernandez) to look at his life in a very new way.

“Skateland explores the rupture of charismatic Ritchie Wheeler, brother and sister Brent and Michelle Burkham, and wise-cracking lady-killer Kenny Crawford’s seemingly complacent existence as they struggle with the collapse of their tumultuous home lives, the alcohol-induced idling of reckless adolescence, and the wane of their hometown hangout, the local roller rink. A story syncopated with moments of violent turbulence, of heartbreak and of new beginnings, Skateland immerses the audience in the brutal, but beautiful vastness of East Texas blue skies and the emotional claustrophobia of the bible belt. Enveloped by the brooding melodies and incendiary rock riffs of the early 80’s, Skateland is a place where aging values wrestle with contemporary pop culture to create a paradoxical balance between old and new.”

The movie also stars Ashley Greene (Twilight), Heath Freeman, Taylor Handley, AJ Buckley, and Haley Ramm. I’m usually a sucker for coming-of-age stories, and growing up in the 1980′s makes this all the more appealing. However, I screened this at Sundance this year and only mildly liked it.  Watch the trailer now after the jump.

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Movie Trailer: Skateland

Skateland

Anthony Burns makes his feature film directorial debut with Skateland premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival as one of the 16 films which were selected from 1,058 submissions for the U.S. Dramatic competition. Skateland is a coming-of-age story which takes place in the early 1980s in small-town East Texas. Dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating rink manager named Ritchie (played by Deadgirl‘s Shiloh Fernandez) to look at his life in a very new way.

“Skateland explores the rupture of charismatic Ritchie Wheeler, brother and sister Brent and Michelle Burkham, and wise-cracking lady-killer Kenny Crawford’s seemingly complacent existence as they struggle with the collapse of their tumultuous home lives, the alcohol-induced idling of reckless adolescence, and the wane of their hometown hangout, the local roller rink. A story syncopated with moments of violent turbulence, of heartbreak and of new beginnings, Skateland immerses the audience in the brutal, but beautiful vastness of East Texas blue skies and the emotional claustrophobia of the bible belt. Enveloped by the brooding melodies and incendiary rock riffs of the early 80’s, Skateland is a place where aging values wrestle with contemporary pop culture to create a paradoxical balance between old and new.”

The movie also stars Ashley Greene (Twilight), Heath Freeman, Taylor Handley, AJ Buckley, and Haley Ramm. I’m usually a sucker for coming-of-age stories, and growing up in the 1980′s makes this all the more appealing. However, I screened this at Sundance this year and only mildly liked it.  Watch the trailer now after the jump.

Read More »

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Skateland

Anthony Burns makes his feature film directorial debut with Skateland, which premieres at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival as one of the 16 films which were selected from 1,058 submissions for the U.S. Dramatic competition. Skateland is a coming-of-age story which takes place in the early 1980s in small-town East Texas. Dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating rink manager named Ritchie (played by Deadgirl‘s Shiloh Fernandez) to look at his life in a very new way.

Ritchie is on the verge of having his life change when the skate park he works at closes down and with it his carefree life of hanging with his friends. With responsibilities suddenly thrust upon him, he spends the rest of the summer transitioning into an adult. “Where he worked at represents a dying age,” Burns explains. “Skateboarding is becoming popular, East Texas is big in exporting energy and industrial chemicals, so there’s a sense of self realization and upward mobility and Ritchie has to grow up.”

Co-writer Brandon Freeman says that Skateland is “a story that resonates – about making choices, finding your way in life, friends, family and change” a story “fueled by an MTV pop appeal, broken and regained relationships, car chases, the always thriving binge drinking backdrop of Anytown, USA, and a cinematic wonder branded by the beauty of the landscape.” I’m a sucker for coming-of-age stories, and growing up in the 1980′s makes this all the more appealing. The movie also stars Ashley Greene (Twilight), Heath Freeman, Taylor Handley, AJ Buckley, and Haley Ramm. Photos after the jump.

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TIFF Review: Deadgirl

Deadgirl tells the story who two friends, Rickie (Shiloh Fernandez) and JT (Noah Segan), who skip High School and break into a local abandoned mental hospital. In the boiler room they find a dead woman strapped to a gurney and covered in plastic. But it turns out that the dead girl is alive, and JT wants to turn the naked zombie into their personal sex slave. Rickie wants no part of it, and tries to distince himself from the situation. But when word of the discovery begins to spread, he gets pulled back in.

Perverse and just plain fucked up, Deadgirl is the next evolution of sex-infused horror genre, which regained traction a couple years ago with the Sundance hit Teeth.  For example, at one point, when the dead girl’s body begins to dry up, its insinuated that they begin to have sex with the warm gooey wounds in her stomach. About 15-20% off the press in attendance at my screening walked out of the screening before the climax.

But don’t get me wrong, Deadgirl is steps above the typical torture porn horror film. Directors Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel have an incredible attention of mood and tone. Deadgirl floats smoothly between dark comedy and horror, and the result is a coming-of-age film like you’ve never seen before (or will likely ever see again).

/Film Rating: 7 out of 10

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