Beach Rats – A Poignant Coming of Age Drama

Other | Monday 27th November 2017 | Cat

Beach Rats premiered at this year's Sundance Film Festival and was an instant hit with the critics, seeing Eliza Hittman claim the Directing Award. The film has now been released at limited cinemas here in the UK and we got the chance to see if it would live up to the critic's praises.

Frankie (Harris Dickinson), a Brooklyn teenager spends his days fooling around with his toxic group of delinquent friends on the boardwalk. However, secretly he is searching hook-up websites looking for older men, that he chats and webcams with, before eventually starting to meet them at a nearby cruising beach. He claims he likes older guys as they are less likely to know people he knows.

Just to complicate things he starts to see a beautiful girl, Simone (Madeline Weinstein), this further works to bring more conflict to Frankie's world as he tries to reconcile his two colliding walks of life, which will eventually result in the climax of the film.

19-year-old Frankie's angst is also driven by his family as his father is bedridden with cancer and his mother is a constant worrier, so he blurs out the reality with the help of his dad's pain medication which keeps him high and hazy as he struggles to escape his home life.

This is Eliza Hittman's second movie since she brought us the equally sexually charged film It Felt Like Love, a few years ago. She has outdone herself on this occasion capturing the unsteady sorrowful atmosphere that’s rare, with French cinematographer Hélène Louvart shooting the movie in hazy 16mm, catching a curious wistfulness.

The real gem of this movie is British born actor Harris Dickson who is more than convincing in the role of Frankie, Brooklyn accent and all. He brings a real sense of insecure masculinity to the role, capturing Frankie's essence and is without question one of the best newcomers of the year.

To find out where you can watch Beach Rats visit the website here and you can watch the trailer below: