Running Length: 77 minutes
Directed by: Matt Wolf
With: Ben Whishaw, Jena Malone, Jessie Usher, Julia Hummer
Screenplay by: Matt Wolf, Jon Savage
Cinematography: Nick Bentgen
Release Date: 24th January 2014
Proves that adolescent rites of passage such as music and fashion are a constant
Teenage documents the difficult birth of youth culture in between two World Wars. Taking inspiration from seminal punk writer Jon Savage’s book of the same name, Matt Wolf’s documentary is a strange beast. The thoughts and feelings of four unconnected teenagers (one of London’s Bright Young Things, a member of the Hitler Youth, a German Swing Kid and an African American Boy Scout) are brought back to life through the narration of Jena Malone and Ben Whishaw. It goes to prove that rites of passage such as music and fashion are a constant. But embellishing the limited archival footage with contemporary reconstructions that read like a Prada ad campaign is distracting. Nevertheless, Teenage is an immersive experience, and the original score by Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox is mesmerising.
Teenage opens exclusively at the Irish Film Institute from Friday 24th January.