Essential Fiction
15+ (exemption)
2016 (80mins)
Dir: Gabrielle Demeestere

Yosemite

Yosemite is a real treat.

Based on two James Franco penned short stories (and within which he makes an appearance), we again visit the town of Palo Alto - also the location of Gia Coppola’s excellent film of the same name.

Here the story follows the intersecting world of three 5th grade friends - Chris, Joe and Ted - as they navigate the strange netherworld been childhood and adolescence from three very different perspectives.

The backstory is the town itself whose expansion into the nearby mountains is starting to encroach on the wildlife - in this case a mountain lion who’s been seen prowling the hinterland surrounding Palo Alto. Each boy’s story however revolves around situations of even greater (potential) peril of which the young boys are utterly unaware.

From an audience perspective we experience some genuinely warm and innocent moments and observations but at the same time as viewers we always seem to be expecting the worst - just as an adult would do.

Yosemite pays off in an authenticity that pervades both individual scene rhythms and performances - VARIETY