Kayla Tabish, Travis Maynard, Lewis Brogan, Din Thomas, Mike Glausier, Jacob Reynolds
The year is 1997. Cale, Jason, and Nicole are awake in Saint Petersburg, Florida, a “dirty, dirty town by a dirty, dirty sea.” The city is plagued by uprisings on the city’s south side after a young black motorist is gunned down by a white police officer.
At the local high school an alcoholic principal drowns his sorrows (and responsibilities) while a student loads a .357 Magnum in a bathroom stall. Cale and Jason reignite an old feud in the parking lot, setting off a cycle of violence that will see an ugly end. Cale meets Nicole after a series of near-misses when her car overheats near the auto shop where he works.
LOREN CASS is not a coming-of-age movie or a loss of innocence—all innocence is lost from the opening scene. Rather, it’s about what comes next; figuring out what to do when you learn you’re not destined for greatness. Young director Chris Fuller captures some amazing subtleties in the everyday rhythms of life, but he provides punk rock explosions along the way. The tension of a post-riot city and the juvenile lust of the chief protagonists is all over the screen, but Fuller finds a restorative balance, showing life as it’s lived without letting nostalgia dim the drama.