Tag Archives: Coming of Age

The School Report is in: My Summer as a Goth!

13 Nov

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available on YouTube
Spoiler Alert

Tara Johnson-Medinger’s directorial debut, My Summer as a Goth, would certainly turn heads if it ever became a school report of what she did in those dog days. This story is about Joey Javitts’ (Natalie Shershow) time as a wannabe to win the love of a boy.

Technically, she should grieve. Her dad recently passed away, and it’s reasonable for her to become preoccupied with death, ask why him, and hide out in her room. She sulks and just doesn’t want to live life to its fullest. Mom can’t help. She’s required to go on a book tour to promote her latest. The grandparents are her only hope, if she can bear to be around them.

Johnson-Medinger’s portfolio is excellent to push the right themes to the fore. She’s the head of the Portland Oregon Women’s Film Festival and its education program, which teaches young ladies how to be innovators. Not only does this school help put them to work in this cut throat industry, but also gives these youths the mentorship needed to succeed.

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Landing at LAAPFF 2020 is Parachute!

6 Oct

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available to viewers in Southern California from Oct 1, 2020 at 12pm PT to Oct 31, 2020 at 11:59pm PT. Click here to watch the film on Eventive.

It’s uncertain how long rich Asian families (usually Chinese) have plopped their children in a foreign land and assume they will remain fine. The plan to get them to assimilate to local culture, and welcome them home later, can backfire, as Katherine Tolentino’s short film sadly shows. The term was once called satellite kids, but these days, the media identifies these youths as Parachute–also the title of this short film.

This filmmaker’s drama reveals how this idea to bridge cultures together can and cannot work. Part of the problem lays with how Asian parents exercise tiger parenting—a term coined by Chinese-American author Amy Chua in “The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.” Their desire also includes thinking removing them from a harsh education system of the East will do some good for the child.

Nicky Zou is excellent at playing a not so idealistic Wendy Zhang, a young woman who’s turned punk because she’s had a rough go at the transition. She’s not the only one in her class. Although we don’t get the other students’ stories (they too are transplants), she’s the one who has a lot of air to grieve. Her host family and school doesn’t try to help. Usually, in real life situations, the desire by the parents to extricate youth from one extreme educational system in hopes to amalgamate them to another is thought of as a good thing. But without guidance counsellors, life can be tough.

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Zombies come to Webtoon Digital Platform in Rot & Ruin!

18 Jan

WEBTOON Rot & RuinJonathan Maberry’s young adult post-apocalyptic zombie series, Rot & Ruin is not only getting developed for film but also is now available to read online through the Webtoon App (iOS and Android). This program allows users to choose what genres they like and also art styles. Since there’s a huge diversity in how artists like to draw, this additional filter is welcomed. Various signup options are available to access the huge number of free comics available.

The comic book series was originally published back in 2014. While the first three issues are available to read for free, further releases will require purchasing. For those who don’t want to wait, tracking down the comic books released by IDW Publishing shouldn’t be too hard. Five issues have been released to date, and there’s also the graphic novel, Warrior Smart.

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Kipo’s Gotta Wear Shades in the Age of the Wonderbeasts

16 Jan

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available on Netflix

When bizarro fantasy meets post-apocalypse, Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts is an exotic experience punctuated by its musical interludes. The soundtrack is a mix of hip hop and industrial. The songs are actually part of the narrative instead of musical bookends to move the story forward. Music Supervisor Kier Lehman (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse) and composer Daniel Rojas (Downsizing) have done an incredible job!

I think of this program of reversing an idea presented in Futurama. The mutants went underground and the normals lived in a high-tech world. Reverse this idea and that’s this series in a nutshell.

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