May 9, 2014
Studio: Tribeca Film
Director: Gia Coppola
MPAA Rating: R (for strong sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and pervasive language - all involving teens)
Screenwriter: Gia Coppola
Starring: James Franco, Emma Roberts, Val Kilmer, Chris Messina, Nat Wolff, Jack Kilmer, Zoe Levin, Claudia Levy
Copyright Holder: N/A
From writer-director Gia Coppola comes an astonishing debut feature that deftly captures the complicated ties, heightened emotions, and romantic highs and lows of adolescence. Based on several linked stories by James Franco, "Palo Alto" is a teenage movie for the ages, made indelible though its ensemble cast featuring some of the most gifted up-and-coming young actors working today. Shy, sensitive April (Emma Roberts) is the class virgin -a popular soccer player and frequent babysitter for her single-dad coach, Mr. B. (James Franco). Teddy (Jack Kilmer) is an introspective artist whose best friend and sidekick Fred (Nat Wolff) is an unpredictable live wire with few filters or boundaries. While April negotiates a dangerous affair with Mr. B., and Teddy performs community service for a DUI - secretly carrying a torch for April, who may or may not share his affection - Fred seduces Emily (Zoe Levin), a promiscuous loner who seeks validation through sexual encounters. One high-school party bleeds into another as April and Teddy finally acknowledge their mutual affection, and Fred's escalating recklessness spirals into chaos.