Cine Sunday: Mid90s
Mid90s is actor Jonah Hill's first foray as a writer-director, and it's a real pleasure to see that all the things we love about him (his goofy sense of humour, his intelligent wit and his tender vulnerably) are still there, albeit behind the camera.
Young Stevie (The Killing of a Sacred Deer's Sunny Suljic) is a sweet 13-year-old who wants to grow up fast. His mother (Katherine Waterston) is loving and attentive, but tells him more than he needs to know about her personal life. And his big brother (Manchester By The Sea's Lucas Hedges) is a taciturn and violent bully. Stevie searches his working-class Los Angeles suburb for somewhere to belong. And one fine day he finds it, at the Motor Avenue skate shop.
Stevie's new friends (played by real-life skateboarders Na-Kel Smith. Olan Prenatt, and Ryder McLaughlin) are older and more experienced in everything that matters, like skateboarding, hip-hop, what clothes to wear, girls, and getting into trouble. Stevie seems so naive but, disarmed by his earnestness and bravado - he'll attempt even the most insane stunts in an effort to be accepted - the Motor Avenue crew eventually welcome him into their fold. Their friendship gives Stevie an unprecedented sense of worth. It also places him in ever-scarier situations.
With a pitch-perfect soundtrack featuring decade-defining cuts from Nirvana's 1993 MTV Unplugged in New York album, the Pharcyde, and Morrissey, as well as an original score courtesy of '90s industrial rock gods Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross of Nine Inch Nails, mid90s captures the hijinks and hair-raising risk-taking of pre-digital-age teen life. Stevie's pals can be obnoxious one moment and exceptionally kind (even wise) the next. Less influenced by Larry Clark than by Francois Truffaut, Hill proves to be a uniquely sophisticated chronicler of youthful folly while delivering some of the funniest and most life affirming scenes you'll find on screen this year.
Information published by Leisure and Culture Dundee.