Directed by Tristan Patterson. US. 2011. NR. 74 minutes. Blu ray.
Sun., June 17, 2012
Dragonslayer won the top documentary award at the South by Southwest Film Festival last year, where it had its world premiere. “The measured vérité style of Frederick Wiseman meets the visual polish of Terrence Malick in Dragonslayer, a fascinating slice of crude Americana from first-time director Tristan Patterson. However, it stands alone with an infectious hard rock attitude. Patterson doesn’t have the epic aims of those filmmakers but equals their respective abilities to create thoroughly involving environments, pitting gorgeous imagery against cold reality with a delicacy rarely seen in the non-fiction form.
Both intimate diary film and a scrappy take on the sports documentary, “Dragonslayer” follows southern Californian skateboarder Skreech, whose real name is Josh Sandoval, at 23 already a jaded punk rocker and perpetually stoned pariah seemingly adrift in his aimless existence. Rather than analyze Sandoval’s world at a distance, Patterson’s movie inhabits it. Departing from the conventions of documentary portraiture, “Dragonslayer” delivers the cinematic equivalent punk rock candy.” (Eric Kohn, IndieWire)