HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Iceman
Blue Sky
Tokyo Dragon Chef
Pittsburgh
12 Hour Shift
Intergalactic Adventures of Max Cloud, The
Spoilers, The
Killer Therapy
Man Upstairs, The
Bloodhound, The
New Mutants, The
Tesla
Flame of New Orleans, The
Ham on Rye
Imperial Blue
Tenet
August 32nd on Earth
Don is Dead, The
Seven Sinners
Body of Water
Away
Soul
About Endlessness
Let It Snow
Ava
Deliver Us from Evil
Shark Attack 3: Megalodon
Midnight Sky, The
Lego Star Wars Holiday Special, The
Mon Oncle Antoine
Blast of Silence
Blackout, The
Stars in Your Eyes
Alone
Climate of the Hunter
Farewell Amor
Let's Scare Julie
Okko's Inn
Shaolin vs. Wu Tang
Fatman
   
 
Newest Articles
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
Newley Minted: The Strange World of Gurney Slade on Blu-ray
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
Living Room Theatre: Play for Today Volume 1 on Blu-ray
Didn't He Do Well: The Bruce Forsyth Show on DVD
Blood Wedding: The Bride with White Hair on Blu-ray
The Inhuman Element: The Ladykillers on 4K UHD
As You Like It, Baby: Breathless on Blu-ray
Stargazing: Light Entertainment Rarities on DVD
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
   
 
  Paranoid Park Teenage boardom
Year: 2007
Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Gabe Nevins, Taylor Momsen, Daniel Liu, Jake Miller, Lauren McKinney, Dillon Hines, Scott Patrick Green
Genre: DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  8 (from 1 vote)
Review: Alex (Gabe Nevins) is a teenager living in Portland, Oregon. A schoolboy and a kewl sk8ter. His parents are getting divorced, he has a pushy shallow girlfriend (Taylor Momsen) and he is writing a story he needs to tell us.

We see him hanging out at a skate park under a bridge, then at school. He gets pulled out of class one day to talk to Detective Liu (Daniel Liu). A security guard has been killed at some railway sidings. Alex is closely questioned but nothing seems out of place. His skater friend Jared (Jake Miller) has suggested going to a legendary skate park – Paranoid Park. One night he goes there to hang out. He comes home but seems to be acting strangely.

One evening he watches the news and hearing a story about a security guard being killed, is visibly shocked. The story is beginning to unfold and goes back in time. Detective Liu has arrived at the school to speak to a group skaters including Alex. He wants to build links with the ‘skating community’ as he believes a skater from the adjacent Paranoid Park may have killed the guard after a skate board is recovered from the river with DNA evidence. The group are shown a picture of a man’s body in two halves across a railway line. This jogs something in Alex’s mind.

We go back to the night in question and see the full situation. Alex is coerced by an older skater (Scott Patrick Green) into riding a freight train. The security guard sees them and starts hitting them with a club. Alex hits back with his skateboard and the man falls beneath a passing train. Alex gets rid of the evidence by throwing his skateboard into the river. He goes home, showers and blocks it from his mind.

We see some of the earlier events of the film and understand their context now. His girlfriend wants to lose her virginity and we see a scene where it’s doubtful that it actually takes place. Alex doesn’t care and they break up. He is closer to his friend Macey (Lauren McKinney), who suggests he writes an unsent letter to her about what’s bothering him and we are back to the start of the film.

As a non-linear film, Paranoid Park is very effective and clear. Gus Van Sant has created a brilliant perspective of teenage life in his home city – Portland. We see numerous slow-motion sequences including skaters airborne in a dreamy ambience. Tracking shots in front of Alex as he slowly and self-consciously walks through school corridors. Pretty much Van Sant’s hallmarks. The carefully chosen music alternates between every genre, electroacoustic piano, Billy Swan, Elliott Smith, classical, thrash metal… It gives cues to the mood which shifts between urban teenage day-to-day life and internal fear.

Gabe Nevins is perfectly cast. He has cool, young carefree, sexy looks and as a non-professional actor who just turned up as a 16 year old skate boarding extra, is utterly incredible. He manages to deliver the part completely naturalistically and narrates Alex’s thoughts to us. The rest of the cast likewise, seem to be playing themselves and were recruited using MySpace – so it’s obviously good for something. An intelligent and complete film with true artistry.
Reviewer: Simon Aronsson

 

This review has been viewed 2887 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Gus Van Sant  (1952 - )

Vaguely arty American director whose films rarely seem quite as satisfying as they should. Drugstore Cowboy remains his best effort, Even Cowgirls Get The Blues undoubtedly his worst. My Own Private Idaho, To Die For, Columbine shootings-based Elephant and Kurt Cobain-inspired Last Days have their fans, and Good Will Hunting was a big success, but the scene-for-scene Psycho remake must be his oddest venture. After a decade of experimentation, including desert trek oddity Gerry, he returned to the mainstream in 2008 with the award-winning biopic Milk then reverted to smaller projects once more, including biopic Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
Enoch Sneed
  Geraint Morgan
Paul Smith
  Lee Fiveash
   

 

Last Updated: