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Seventeen1983

Middletown

  • 4.1
High School seniors hurtling toward maturity experience joy, despair and an aggravated sense of urgency. They are also learning a great deal about life, both in and out of school, and not what school officials think they are teaching.

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4 members like this review

Out there. Goes there. Direct. Unmediated. These kids are honest and authentic. I kept laughing, imagining some grandma watching PBS hearing some of the sex stories and such. No wonder it wasn't released. Definitely cinema verite.

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top reviewer

Member Reviews (5)

113859.small
top reviewer

Out there. Goes there. Direct. Unmediated. These kids are honest and authentic. I kept laughing, imagining some grandma watching PBS hearing some of the sex stories and such. No wonder it wasn't released. Definitely cinema verite.

4 members like this review

This is a criminally bad looking version of a beautiful film. Where was this video version made -- K-Mart? This version is censored and contains credits for people who did not work on the film. The real version of the film starts with a hand-written title "Seventeen" and nothing else. I have no idea who is responsible for this travesty but there is a special circle of hell reserved for those who desecrate films like this. Saw it at BAM last week and it was beautiful.

1 member likes this review

The high school experience may be incredibly outdated with the absence of technology in the 70's, but this film is more authentic and human than anything you'll see in documentary cinema or a modern teenager's Instagram account. The filmmakers' crowning achievement is their ability to capture heavy amounts of material on their subjects, while also appearing invisible to the subjects themselves. This is as unobtrusive as documentary cinema can get without being surveillance footage.

A NYT article about the movie and surrounding controversy:

http://www.nytimes.com/1982/04/12/us/muncie-finds-film-on-students-a-distorted-mirror.html

That article is hilarious. It does not even mention the filmmakers. Peter Davis never met anyone in the film. If you want to read the true story of what happened, read this:

http://db.tt/TgBE48uC

trashy