Documentary Films | 2017 | 96 minutes
Stranger Says: Eight teenage girls use a youth center as the launchpad for what could very well be eventual world domination. Director Annika Berg’s shot-out-of-a-cannon debut impressively delineates between the different characters without ever slowing down, while also curating an absolute riot of colors and seemingly random imagery. (Even the subtitles have a neon Otter Pop glow.) A sensitive, funny (an increasingly awkward sex-ed sequence is particularly sharp), and highly caffeinated film that empowers without a whiff of condescension. As far as modern-day mission statements go, “Lets just overdo it and totally own it” isn’t bad at all, really.
SIFF Says:An illustration of the wild, vibrant, and tortured mind of the teenage girl, Annika Berg’s TEAM HURRICANE combines raw documentary footage with stylized pop culture visuals to create the ultimate punk coming-of-age film. Berg’s band of eight rebels, all found through social media, play only slightly modified versions of themselves and explore their artistry and expression while managing painful realities. Eating disorders, sex, gender identity, self-harm, and mental health are among the harsh themes Berg explores through a hyper-real aesthetic of color and imagination. The girls gather at a youth club over the course of one summer in Denmark that serves as a representation of how social education is handled by institutions that seek to provide safe spaces. While serving as an ode to the rule-breaking cool girl with neon hair and little inhibition, the film captures the unpredictable nature of moments of self-worship followed immediately by crippling insecurity. TEAM HURRICANE has an evident mission to empower female energy during a time when it is most suppressed, while creating an aching nostalgia for the undeniable vulnerability of adolescence.
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