Border Radio



Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 26%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 26%
IMDb Rating 5.4 10 634

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Uploaded By: FREEMAN
November 11, 2020 at 06:44 PM



John Doe as Dean
Craig Stark as Thug
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
768.16 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 23 min
P/S counting...
1.39 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 23 min
P/S 1 / 2

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by omarramonmuniz 3 / 10

This independent get the criterion treatment?

I've become a fan of the criterion collection over the past few years or so. I consider the institution a staple in the film industry, both in recognizing and preserving pivotal pieces throughout the years. In fact, seeing the criterion collection symbol on a DVD cover sparks my interest in films that I probably wouldn't think twice about watching otherwise. An example of this is Border Radio. I anxiously awaited a screening of this film because of its importance to indie film explosion, and I am a big supporter of indie flicks. But as I watched it, I realized that this is a very good student film. But it's too amateur and unseasoned to earn any comparison to better indie flicks and better Hollywood flicks. The film is sloppy in its structure. After establishing the characters, the film takes the shape of a documentary where these characters are interviewed, one-on-one. The idea itself isn't a bad one, but the filmmakers don't give a reason for doing so. Why are these characters are being interviewed? How does it contribute to the story? The characters themselves have absolutely no redeeming qualities and the filmmakers don't give us a way to relate to any of them. The acting is horrific, and better directors in better movies have proved that non-actors can produce good and sometimes great performances. The actors in this movie all look like film students although we know some aren't. The best performance was produced by the Mexican who sang and drank a corona for 1 short scene. The story itself is dull and cliché. If another film student makes a movie that has to do with somebody owing a club owner money, I'm going to scream. More importantly, the film has no premise! Most films have a premise without trying. This one has none, no moral of the story, or no point to the story. These things are learned in film 101. In fact, these things should come natural in any form of storytelling. The only thing that makes this film worth anybody's time is its photography and some of the music. There are some great landscape shots and a beautiful scene where the daughter is circled on a music merry-go-round. Ultimately, this film is a perfect example on how some indie flicks get much props simply because their indie flicks. How this gets the criterion treatment, I have no idea. This is simply a bad movie made my amateur filmmakers still searching for a voice. It took them 4 years to make this movie and, despite how low-budget a film is, it should never take 4 years to make an 83 minute movie with non-actors and a bad script. I do appreciate a movie with good intentions and I would assume that these USC film students had good intentions to make a non-Hollywood film about real people; but those intentions fall massively short. The ridiculously high acclaim that some indie flicks get because they're shot with shoe-string budgets with plot less stories has to stop (in the same way the acclaim some Hollywood flicks get because they have big stories and a predictable storyline has to stop).

Reviewed by AlsExGal 3 / 10

Bordering on just awful

Apparently most people are crazy about this "cult film". I am not. I do enjoy looking at the stylized cinematography. I liked it enough to sit through the rest of this awful film because at least I had something interesting to look at.

Three southern California punk rockers rob a club of one thousand dollars that they feel was robbed from them for services rendered, and hide out across the Mexican border waiting for - what I don't know, but I'm not alone, because they don't seem to know either They seem to completely lack any kind of plan. They have committed a serious crime but they just sit around shooting a gun into thin air, talking to dolls and smashing their faces, and acting in general like people I do not want to know. And nothing is ever said or done that makes me want to know them.

Lu (Luanne Anders), is actually married to one of these guys and they have a little girl together, and thus she starts trying to figure out what happened - why and where have they disappeared?. One of them calls her and tells her where HE is and to come down and he will tell her the story. When she arrives he acts like a complete idiot. For example, she asks "Why am I here?". He just wears a stupid grin and says "Why are any of us here?". It's like watching somebody discipline a ten year old boy. Like a ten year old boy, he's mentally old enough to know when he has done something wrong, but not able to digest the serious ramifications of anything.

As this film wears on - and it did wear on me - we learn that, IMHO, the dumbest of the three, who is constantly being bailed out by his well off parents although apparently in his mid 20's, is having an affair with Lu. Why she would pick this guy when her husband seemed like he had more potential, AND he was her husband? I was never able to figure that out.

Some people highly praise this film. I'll grant them that for the cinematography, but unless you are from southern California and were ever inside the punk rock movement, I doubt you'll glean much from this experience. I walked away from this knowing little more about the characters and feeling nothing more for them than I did at the beginning, and to me that's a major sign that a film has failed in its mission.

Reviewed by StevePulaski 6 / 10

Stumbles its way into significance, much like the movement it is a part of

Had Border Radio not been released on the prestigious Criterion Collection label, I doubt many people, even the most hardened cinephiles, would be aware of its existence. It's less a cogent film and more a peculiar oddity from an era that was brewing in American film, which was the do it yourself (DIY) movement that basically involved a slew of young directors seeing films and becoming inspired enough to make their own works with the technology readily available to them. Being that home video has begun and VHS camcorders were becoming more common and affordable, unknowns turned acclaimed directors like Richard Linklater, Spike Lee, Kevin Smith, and Jim Jarmusch took their inspiration from certain films, and even films made by one another, and used it as the gas to fuel their latest projects.

One of the few female directors from that time period, Allison Anders, who seems to get lost in the shuffle to her more successful male counterparts, helped kick off the DIY movement more or less with Border Radio, a perplexing eighty-minute film that functions less like a film and more like a rambling musing on rock and roll, punk-culture, and the aimless and desolate landscape of a border community. This particular film concerns a trio of of Southern Californian musicians, who hold up a nightclub they performed at for $1,000 for a presumably unpaid show before hightailing to Mexico just as soon as they arrived. They are also in search of Jeff (Chris D.), a rocker who goes missing around the same time, resulting in a search for him by, not only the criminals, but Jeff's ex-wife.

This plot is a lot easier to understand on paper than practice; Border Radio is about as disjointed as a film can be, essentially playing hopscotch with the idea of a conventional and linear narrative. Distracting us from the occasionally plodding and unclear characters and story is the abundance of natural beauty that directors Anders, Dean Lent, and Kurt Voss convey quite nicely through black and white, Super 16mm filmstock. The result is a film that feels like a shoddy home movie, only adding to the kind of yesteryear punk style that would make an older, wiser Richard Kern crack a faint grin, especially after the masterpieces he created after working with Sonic Youth.

Border Radio is a tricky film to understand in that it's unconventionality and lack of a cohesive narrative bleed through it like an unattended to flesh wound. It's never really that funny, never completely interesting, and always seems to leave you at arm's length with all its characters and their situations. Having said all of that, its coldness is a key element in punk filmmaking, at least the kind I've seen. It's a film with an attitude and unwillingness to compromise its style for anything in the way of substance - sort of like the DIY films of the 1990's, which sort of just stumbled their way into being considered smart, observant comedies thanks to those who went out of their way to rent them at the videostore countless times. With Border Radio, there's no mean-spirited comedy, no melodrama, and no real menace or spice to its recipe; it's too busy living a cold and unashamed life to divulge into anything of that magnitude.

Directed by: Allison Anders, Dena Lent, and Kurt Voss.

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