In order to carve out a niche for themselves and forge an identity independent of Sundance, the SXSW Film Festival championed a lot of micro-indies and low-budget films that defined the “mumblecore” scene. After some years, some argued the quality of the films wasn’t very strong, but the press was good enough for SXSW to keep embracing some dynamic, but sometimes questionable and unpolished work. This came to a head at SXSW 2014, where Grand Jury Award prizewinner “Fort Tilden” extremely divided critics into a fairly binary love or hate camp with the hate side being rather vituperative.
But a year after its worldwide debut in Austin, “Fort Tilden” is finally here and non-festival audiences can judge for themselves. Directed by Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers “Fort Tilden” focuses on the quarter-life crisis of two millennial two-somethings. Here’s the official synopsis.
Amidst quarter-life crises, Allie struggles to prepare for the Peace Corps, while Harper awaits checks from her father to fund her artistic dreams. But the two friends quickly shun responsibilities for the day when a pair of good-looking guys invite them along for a carefree Fort Tilden afternoon. As the two young women board their bikes and embark on a lengthy journey to the beach, they quickly realize that, akin to their confusing, transitioning lives, they neither know where they’re going nor how they plan to get there.
Starring newcomers Bridey Elliott and Clare McNulty, plus the supporting cast of Griffin Newman, Jeffrey Scaperrotta, Neil Casey, Alysia Reiner, Will Hines, Peter Vack, Max Jenkins, John Early, “Fort Tilden” did polarize people, but like the Huffington Post said, “You WILL have an opinion.”
Our SXSW review wrote, “at a point when the latest tale of twenty-something woe might understandably induce the same defeated sighs as the early crackle of yet another found-footage flick, co-writer/directors Bliss and Rogers thread the navel-gazing needle with remarkable wit, as if channeling Sofia Coppola‘s [version of] ‘After Hours.’ ”
Due in theaters on August 14th via Orion Releasing, the first trailer and poster has arrived and you can check them out below.