DCA Archive

Ciné Sunday: As You Are


Back in the mid-1990s, high school loner Jack lives with his single mum and spends a lot of time watching television and listening to music on his own. Things begin to change when his mother introduces him to her new boyfriend, who has a teenage son of his own. Mark is everything Jack isn’t: chatty, outgoing, edgy. When their parents decide to move in together, Mark and Jack’s relationship begins to deepen, forced as they are to share a room. Into this picture then arrives a third person, Sarah. She’s strikingly beautiful and confident and she alters the ongoing dynamic in ways large and small, for better and for worse. But the day that Mark’s dad shows them his handgun collection and teaches them how to shoot will have far-reaching repercussions for everybody…

From the very start, the film is an intriguing contrast of moods, cutting between a seemingly straightforward depiction of events and a police interview room that slowly builds up the reality of what has actually happened. Working out the truth provides an engrossing challenge, with constantly shifting relationships, individual perspectives and differing versions of events. Winner of a Special Jury Prize at Sundance Film Festival last year this slice of teenage life, despite its dramatic outcome, contains situations and moments that will resonate with teenagers the world over.

As You Are was selected by our Discovery Young Ambassadors, a group of film-loving 15-19 year-olds. Here's what they have to say about it:

"A great story that is thrilling, harrowing and meaningful."

"Great performances, very convincing."

"Great writing, intertwining present/past doesn’t seem confusing or arbitrary."

"I thought the story was going to be predictable but it kept changing, creating a false sense of what was going to happen."

"Good depiction of teenage friendships, nice dynamics."

"Keeps your eyes glued to the screen the entire time."