On the outskirts of Brooklyn, Frankie, an aimless teenager, suffocates under the oppressive glare cast by his family and a toxic group of delinquent friends. Struggling with his own identity, Frankie begins to scour hookup sites for older men. When his chatting and web-camming intensify, he begins meeting men at a nearby cruising beach while simultaneously entering into a cautious relationship with a young woman. As Frankie struggles to reconcile his competing desires, his decisions leave him hurtling toward irreparable consequences.
Writer/director Eliza Hitman‘s award-winning Sundance hit is a powerful character study that is as visually stunning as it is evocative. Young lead actor Harris Dickinson gives a brave, totally riveting performance as a sexually-confused teen. Expect to see a lot more of him in upcoming projects. With the plethora of hook-up sites available now, Beach Rats also manages to offer a unique, stirring insight into what it’s like for curious gay and bi-sexual teens coming of age today.
The film received a limited theatrical release and has earned excellent reviews from critics…
“One of the boldest, most original films of the year. It does that incredible thing of making you miss it before it’s even over, like fireworks that turn to smoke before you’re ready.” – Julia Cooper, The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
“The bold, masterful Beach Rats, one of the most exquisitely haunting LGBT coming-of-age stories ever told, takes place in the un-hip fringes of Brooklyn, a land that time has forgotten. But nothing about this film is forgettable.” – David Lewis, San Francisco Chronicle
“Hittman‘s depictions of sexuality, emotional crisis, and parent-teen relationships are rendered her without sentimentality – and with the burning urgency of a stick of dynamite with a lit fuse.” – April Wolfe, Village Voice
“Harris Dickinson, the spellbinding British newcomer who plays Frankie, rewards the director’s scrutiny with piercing emotional depth and a startling lack of self-consciousness.” – Ben Kenigsberg, The New York Times
“Hittman‘s devotion to the male bodies onscreen is obsessive. Most good filmmakers, and most good artists, are obsessives. It goes with the territory. Hittman‘s obsession creates a potent blend of eroticism, pent-up feelings and good old-fashioned appreciation of beauty.” – Sheila O’Malley, RogerEbert.com