VHYes | Denver Film Society | Jack Henry Robbins | USA


Jack Henry Robbins

Comedy, Cult, Dark Comedy

EnglishUSA201973 min


No upcoming showtimes scheduled.


This nostalgic charmer—a tribute to all the kids who grew up making movies with their parents’ unwieldy camcorders—will take any child of the 1980s right back to their youth. That’s in part because director/co-writer Jack Henry Robbins filmed the comedy entirely on vintage VHS equipment, and the unsteady, poorly framed, and scratchy images are satisfyingly authentic.

Young teen Ralph is the lucky recipient of such a camcorder on Christmas morning, 1987, and after nabbing the video cassette of his parents’ wedding, he begins to document the next seven days of his life. The result combines footage of happier times with snippets of family fights, the local junkyard, and local programming delightfully recorded from Ralph’s TV: There’s “Painting with Joan,” in which a horny woman offers artistic instruction in the style of an unhinged Bob Ross; “Hot Winter: A Film by Dick Pierre,” an erotic exploration of global warming; and an America’s Most Wanted clone that reenacts a sorority talent show–turned–murderous witch hunt. Executive producers Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon also make appearances in infomercials, news bytes, and public-access shows that add up to a pitch-perfect pastiche.

Producer: Delaney Schenker | Editor: Avner Shiloah | Cinematographer: Nate Gold | Screenwriter: Nunzio Randazzo, Jack Henry Robbins
Cast: Susan Sarandon, Madeline Zima, Tim Robbins, Charlyne Yi, Thomas Lennon