Film Review: Skateland


Director: Anthony Burns

Screenwriters: Anthony Burns, Brandon Freeman, Heath Freeman

skateland movie poster jpeg

I didn’t love it.  The highlight of this film was the costuming, photography and set design.  The script was un-inspiring but well acted if that makes any sense.  I kept asking myself that one question that lets you know the film ain’t doin it for you…”when is this going to be over”?  It was frustrating because it was very well made.  I think I know where the director wanted to go but the script did not give us a chance to invest in the characters. 

Supposedly the main character Ritchie Wheeler (Shiloh Fernandez) is a writer at heart who loves his craft but is having a hard time deciding which way in life he wants to go after high-school.  I did not see his passion for writing at all in this film.  The skating rink “Skateland” had a minimal role in the film other than the fact it was the place he worked and it was closing down.  Skateland’s closing was supposed to be the kick in the boots to get on with his life and do something but in the end his getting out had nothing to do with his own efforts.

The cast was strong in the film right down to the two stoner characters Vance (Kent Jude Bernard) and Lee (Cameron Pierce) but without strong character development this film fell flat.  You can only look at the old cassette tapes and album covers in amazement for so long wondering how they found that old stuff before it dawns on you that the props and hairstyles are becoming the most interesting part of the piece.

On a positive note.  The cinematoghrapy was flawless thanks to Peter Simonite, the production design was top notch thanks to production designer Chris Stull and costume desinger Kari Perkins knocked it out of the park with the clothes and hair.

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