Jerrycan (2008) Julius Avery

Untrained child actors, an improvisational camera style, no lights, and a stark storyline give Julius Avery’s short film Jerrycan a grittiness and a gravity. Close, quick, and fluid shots capture the tension of the characters and sometimes coyly expose the nervousness of the actors. The plot concerns a gang of boys’ shifting hierarchy and the resulting peer pressure. The kids must all ask themselves how much they are willing to risk to gain the respect of the others and themselves. It won the Jury Prize at Cannes in 2008 and was an honorable mention at Berlin and Sundance.

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