Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Jonathan Velasquez, Francisco Pedrasa, Milton Velasquez, Usvaldo Panameno, Eddie Velasquez
Director: Larry Clark
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Sports
Ten years after KIDS, Larry Clark tackles the controversial subject of teens and race in LA, aiming his lens on an unlikely crew of Latino skate punk kids from the ghetto neighborhood of South Central who just want to be t... more »
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Coulda been a contender
L. Strickland | Southern California | 12/18/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I loved this movie. In a lot of ways, it paralled my life as a black teen in the Cleveland ghetto in the mid sixties. We didn't skate, we rode bikes and popped wheelies all over town, and found our share of trouble. We didn't smoke or do drugs, sex was something bragged about without having actually experienced it, but like these rockers, we were kids without a vision of hope or an expection of a future, living in a gritty world where life was so cheap that nothing much really mattered. The story of these kids lives was my story too. I was lucky enough to escape the ghetto via the Air Force and subsequent higher education. I'm upper middle class now, but my daughter attends a public high school, and has a lot of Latino skater friends who are just like these kids. This movie is real, and communicates its genuineness in the scenes where the boys are in the company of themselves, as opposed to the scenes showing them interacting with people outside their neighborhood. I know kids who act and talk like this. I laughed and cried with them, and I think you will too. If you're doing well, don't be so quick to look down on someone who is different from you, perhaps from the other end of the bus line, or the penny side of the checkbook. The film reminded me to offer hope and show the way where I can."
Stephen A. Palermo | Rochester, NY | 04/18/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Always abrasive, almost always shocking, Larry Clark presents a tale not too far off the path he's created in the film and photo world in "Wassup Rockers". This time around, he treats his subjects with a sensitivity that is typically hidden under the surface in his other work. A must-see for Clark fans and for fans of coming-of-age tales for a new millenium."
One of Clark's Best Films
Joshua Miller | Coeur d'Alene,ID | 03/19/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Larry Clark is a gifted filmmaker (and some would say "pedophile") who shows a completely different side of his skill with documenting the lives of teenagers in "Wassup Rockers." His first film "Kids" was an important film dealing with AIDS, but it wasn't a masterpiece. His 2nd film "Another Day in Paradise" was a great film that dealt with teenage drug addicts and managed to be funny, heartbreaking, and entertaining. His third film "Bully" was a masterpiece, based on a true story that was simultaneously horrifying and realistic. Then there was the "what the hell?" movie of his career "Teenage Caveman" which was basically about teenagers having sex to the backdrop of a horror movie. "Wassup Rockers" is about a group of seven Hispanic skateboarders living in South Central, who one day make the mistake of traveling to Beverly Hills to skate. The movie (with a screenplay by Clark) starts off introducing us to the characters and their lives (all the characters are named after the actors that play them). There's Jonathan Valesquez, the ladies' man of the group who opens the film with a long-winded monologue. Then there's Milton a.k.a. Spermball, the biggest yet seemingly youngest one of the group. Then there's Eddie, Porky, Carlos, Louie, and Kico. Besides being skateboarders, the group are trying to start a band (the entire a film is set to a sometimes annoying punk-rock soundtrack, that fits the movie perfectly though), which is where the titles "Wassup Rockers" comes from. The movie struck a chord with me, because it takes a lot of different turns. The film begins like a documentary, switches gears to become a comedy, and then suddenly turns tragic. When the group arrives in Beverly Hills, they find themselves on a series of misadventures with tragic results. One part in the film (a really sad scene) features a character that Clark based on Charlton Heston (making the scene simultaneously horrifying and funny), but he cast an actor that looks and sounds like Clint Eastwood. "Wassup Rockers" is one of Clark's greatest achievements; it's funny, emotionally powerful, and superbly acted. The dialogue is sometimes unintelligible (the character will say a word in Spanish in the middle of a sentence in English) and sometimes the grammar is bad, but it just adds to the realism. "Wassup Rockers" is (like all movies by Clark) not for everyone and a lot of people will dislike this one because of its shift in mood. Once the characters get to Beverly Hills, the scenes become much darker and violent. "Wassup Rockers" is not perfect, but it's one of the best and most underrated films I've seen from 2006 and I highly recommend you check it out because it deserves more views than it has received.
A very engaging movie, real, imperfect but great.
CG | Burlington, KY USA | 11/23/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie was a lot of fun. It had me hooked from the beginning. Latino skater kids from "the ghetto" generally just doing what they feel like. Great characters, acting and scenes. Over the top at times, but still excellent. Will watch again."