21 September 2014 | paul-allaer
Exploring "Teenage Wasteland"
"The Age of Reason" (2014 releases; 92 min.) brings the story of how a couple of teenagers are dealing with the boredom of summer while facing an uncertain future. As the movie opens, we seen Oz and Freddy, longtime best buddies. wreck havoc at the local dump, smashing cars, etc. Soon after, the get to know Ruby, a teenage girl whose family has just moved into the neighborhood. Oz has an invite for a major league baseball tryout in Nashville, but can he leave his little sister and alcoholic dad behind? Meanwhile Freddy is trying to figuring out what he could be good at. Both boy have their eyes on Ruby. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: first, the movie is co-written and directed by Jordan Harris and Andrew Schrader. I can't say that I am familiar with them, so I'm guessing this is one of their first films, if not the very first. They do a good job setting the framework for the suburban boredom and uncertainly that these youngsters experience. In particular the Freddy character, rather than the Oz or Ruby character, oozes teenage wasteland frustration and rage. Second., there are some nice acting performances, none more so than the three teenage leads, Myles Tufts as Oz, Blake Sheldon as Freddy, and Megan Devine as Ruby, whom recently also starred briefly in "Boyhood". Last but not least, there is a great indie music soundtrack to the movie, including 5 or 6 songs from Ty Segall, but also songs from Allah-Las (one of my favorite bands right now), Summer Twins, and others.
I recently saw this movie at the 2014 Cincinnati Film Festival. This is by no means a major festival, and they focus exclusively on under-the-radar indies (such as this movie) and documentaries (both short and long form). I have no idea if "The Age of Reason" will find a larger audience. If you have a chance to check this out either at a festival or in the theaters or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray, I'd readily suggest that you do that.