MDFF presents Mike Ott's PEARBLOSSOM HWY
On Wednesday June 11th, 9pm at Double Double Land, MDFF will present a screening of Mike Otts Pearblossom Hwy. PWYC.
Official Selection Rotterdam International Film Festival 2013
Anna and Cory are two unlikely friends living in the nowhere town of Lancaster, California. Upon receiving news of her dying grandmother in Taipei, Anna, with no financial resources, starts to engage in sexual deeds to buy a plane ticket home. Meanwhile, Cory begs her to stay and travel with him to help find his estranged father, whom hes never met. As her grandmothers time runs out, Anna must quickly choose between her life in America and returning to Japan and the only real family she has left.
Inspired by Neo-realism as well as the French New Wave, Mike Ott constantly blurs the lines between reality and fiction in his work, and with Pearblossom Hwy he goes further than ever before. The script was developed as real events occurred in the lives of the cast: Lead actor Cory Zacharia received glum news about his own father, whom he had never met. Consequently, Ott constructed a narrative that incorporates Corys actual struggles, as well as using some of Atsuko Okatsukas who plays Anna life story in the film, and fictionalizes events to tackle issues of racism, immigration and the lost American dream.
Yet unscripted moments abound, and these are, in fact, at the heart of Otts work: The abandoned youth in small town America, the fallacy of the American Dream, and the truth that lies somewhere in that porous threshold between fact and fiction.
Directed by Mike Ott Produced by Athina Rachel Tsangari Score by Mara Huld Markan Sigfsdttir
Mike Ott studied under Thom Andersen at the California Institute of the Arts where he received his Masters of Fine Arts degree in Film/Video. His feature film, Littlerock, won numerous awards, including the Audience Award at the 2010 AFI Fest, a Gotham Award, and in 2011, Mike won an Independent Spirit Award for "Someone to Watch". In June 2014 Mike will release Lake Los Angeles 2014 which is the third film in his Antelope Valley desert trilogy which also includes: Littlerock 2010 and Pearblossom Hwy 2012. Presently, Mike teaches film directing at the University of Southern California USC.