Warm, winning, and gloriously alive, Sean Baker’s (TANGERINE) THE FLORIDA PROJECT is a deeply moving and unforgettably poignant look at childhood.
Set on a stretch of highway just outside the imagined utopia of Disney World, THE FLORIDA PROJECT follows six-year-old Moonee (newcomer Brooklynn Prince, in a stunning breakout turn) and her rebellious mother Halley (Bria Vinai, another major discovery) over the course of a single summer. The two live week to week at “The Magic Castle,” a budget hotel managed by Bobby (a career-high performance from Willem Dafoe, who has now been nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category in both the Golden Globes and Oscars in this role), whose stern exterior hides a deep reservoir of kindness and compassion.
Despite her harsh surroundings, the precocious and ebullient Moonee has no trouble making each day a celebration of life, her endless afternoons overflowing with mischief and grand adventure as she and her ragtag playmates—including Jancey, a new arrival to the area who quickly becomes Moon’s best friend—fearlessly explore the utterly unique world into which they’ve been thrown. Unbeknownst to Moonee, however, her delicate fantasy is supported by the toil and sacrifice of Halley, who is forced to explore increasingly dangerous possibilities in order to provide for her daughter.
“A truly magnificent effort.” (The Georgia Straight)
“This movie accomplishes something almost miraculous – two things, actually. It casts a spell and tells the truth.” (New York Times)
“One of the best movies on childhood ever… Sean Baker‘s follow-up to TANGERINE turns a seedy motel into a wonderland – and gives Willem Dafoe a shot at an Oscar.” (Rolling Stone)
Wednesday, March 7
Doors 6:15 pm | Movie 6:45 pm
Advance tickets $10 HERE | $12 at the door
*Minors welcome in the balcony! Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service and main floor seating.
**Rio Theatre Groupons and passes OK! Please redeem at the door.
THE FLORIDA PROJECT (Sean Baker, 2017 / 115 mins / PG) The story of a precocious six year-old and her ragtag group of friends whose summer break is filled with childhood wonder, possibility and a sense of adventure while the adults around them struggle with hard times.