Maps To The Stars
Julianne Moore, John Cusack and Mia Wasikowska star in David Cronenberg's Hollywood caricature.
Three teenagers seek freedom from their mundane suburban lives by fleeing their families, building a makeshift house in the woods and fending for themselves.
At first glance, The Kings Of Summer looks like your typical Sundance flick: a nostalgic portrait of suburban childhood, propped up by a host of television stars let off the hook in supporting roles. However, director Jordan Vogt-Roberts and writer Chris Galletta’s long list of influences – which includes Millions, Son Of Rambow and Stand By Me – reveals greater ambitions.
Like those touchstones, The Kings Of Summer both captures the adventurous spirit of youth and treats its characters’ problems seriously, which is done with great heart in this story of troubled teens who run away from home and build a house in a secluded clearing in a local forest. Sure, there are delightful turns from the likes of Parks And Recreation’s Nick Offerman and Will & Grace’s Megan Mullally as the boys’ parents, but they serve as more than just familiar faces and comic relief, they’re what’s pushing the kids away: Offerman plays ringleader Joe Toy’s (Nick Robinson) withdrawn, closed-off single father, while Mullally’s overbearing mother reminds her son Patrick (Gabriel Busso) of Street Fighter II’s burly green brawler Blanka.
Playing at times like the best bits of JJ Abrams’ Super 8 (which also starred Busso), The Kings Of Summer sees its teenage characters clinging onto the unbridled innocence of youth, while yearning for the maturity and freedom of adulthood. By simultaneously representing both their unattainable ideal of a Jack London-type frontiersman existence and their desire for a place of their own, the house they build (Toy’s House, as the film’s original title calls it) is a melting pot of masculine themes – and The Kings Of Summer plays these out with both humour and warmth.
Rich in suburban subtext, The Kings Of Summer is a coming-of-age indie movie full of poignancy, charm and strong performances.
Unfortunately I haven¿t been jet setting around the world this year to the various exciting international film festivals, but that¿s what makes the London Film Festival¿s compilation approach to progr
One of the best things about the London Film Festival¿s smorgasbord approach to programming is that, amongst the world premieres and gala screenings, there¿s an eclectic collection of exciting films o
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@Film4 RT @rookfilms: The Duke of Burgundy - "the most unashamedly erotic film of the year" http://t.co/H2BvHBxDuA @veritefilmmag @BFI @Film4
@Film4 We're off to Colombia with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner next at 5.10pm, for classic 80s adventure comedy Romancing The Stone.
@Film4 The Undiscovered Country was nominated for 2 Oscars in 1992, for Sound Effects Editing & Makeup - but Terminator 2 won both. #oscartally
@Film4 Heads up, folks! One of the very best Star Trek films is about to start on Film4+1 at 2pm: Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.
@Film4 Nothing like Star Trek on a Sunday, is there? FYI: We're also screening Generations tomorrow and First Contact on Tuesday, both at 6.40pm.