Indie Gems: Little Athens
This film centers around a group of teenagers/early twenty somethings trying to pass the time in Athens, Arizona. You have Jimmy, (John Patrick Amedori)a small time drug dealer who's got some big problems. Jessica (Jill Ritchie) leaves the young girl she's babysitting home alone and drags along her friend Carlos (Michael Pena) as she tries to find someone to kick her boyfriend's ass for her. (He's pissed because she gave him an STD) Then you have Corey (D.J Qualls) and Pedro,(Jorge Garcia) a couple of slackers that are trying to come up with rent money to get back into their house after their landlord shuts them out. Finally there's Heather, (Erica Leerhsen) who's convinced her cop boyfriend is cheating on her and frequently takes her anger out on her friend Ali. (Rachel Miner)
All of these characters' lives are intertwined and they all end up at the same party at the end of the night. This film feels really authentic in capturing what small town life is like on a boring summer day. Everyone in the cast is a natural and fits perfectly. The film is very low budget, you can tell by the way some scenes are edited. It gets sloppy, but you have to appreciate what they managed to do with it all. The film uses a color palette frequently. Corey's scenes often have blue, Ali's yellow, Jimmy's red, etc. The score is very simple and a lot of the songs they used came from unsigned bands that only had MySpace pages at the time.
I really wanted to see this when it came out back in 2006, and I'm a little ashamed of how long it took me to sit down and watch it, but it was well worth the wait.
Memorable Quote: "I don't understand why you do it." - Ali (Rachel Miner)