Over the past year and a half, Antonio Campos’ “Afterschool” has been an Official Selection at the Cannes, Berlin, New York and SXSW Film Festivals. Now, thanks to IFCFilms, the long-awaited theatrical release is scheduled for October 1 although the film will also be available On Demand starting September 30. Despite the film’s strong record of critical success, IFC has opted for a bit of an unconventional release method. Then again, a movie examining the dark side of an elite private school probably does not have very wide commercial appeal. Unless, of course, it stars Blake Lively. In any case, hit the jump and see what all the buzz is about.
A successor of sorts to Gus van Sant’s “Elephant” and Jacob Estes’ “Mean Creek,” Campos’ feature length debut puts the confusion, frustration and violence (both latent and overt) of adolescence front and center and dares the audience to look away. From the official summary:
“A truly impressive new voice in American indie film, Antonio Campos arrives with “Afterschool”, a riveting look at the dark side of youth in the media age…Robert is a young American student at an elite East Coast preparatory school. When he accidentally captures on camera the horrific death of two girls, he’s tasked with memorializing their lives in a film meant to help speed up the school’s healing process. For some, this exercise only deepens the trauma.”