You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Five Time Champion

Modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler's efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit.

With:
With: Ryan Akin, Betty Buckley, Dana Wheeler-Nicholson, Jon Gries, Justin Arnold, Noell Coet, Robert Longstreet, Don Pirl, Juli Erickson.

Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of spirit toward his characters that may help his debut feature attract attention on homevid after fest-circuit exposure.

Already sensitive to rumors about his runaway father’s alleged homosexuality, young Julius (Ryan Akin) is confused by his reluctance to get physical with a willing classmate (Noell Coet). Meanwhile, his taxidermist mom (Dana Wheeler-Nicholson) is torn between two ardent admirers, an amiable underachiever (Justin Arnold) and the wealthy baseball coach at Julius’ school (Jon Gries), and his grandfather (Don Pirl) greatly distresses Julius’ grandmother (Betty Buckley) by surreptitiously caring for an ailing ex-sweetheart (Juli Erickson). Julius’ ongoing science project, involving worms that regenerate themselves, carries a tad too much symbolic weight. But performances are fine across the board, and the resolution to the mystery of Julius’ dad is surprising and funny.

Five Time Champion

Production: A Bear Media presentation of a Shark Films/Bear Media production. Produced by Ezra Venetos, Berndt Mader. Directed, written by Berndt Mader.

Crew: Camera (color), Jimmy Lee Phelan; editors, Brent Joseph, Don Howard; music, Graham Reynolds; production designer, Javier Bonafont; art director, Alan Lampert; costume designer, Stephanie A. Steele. Reviewed on DVD, Houston, May 15, 2011. (In SXSW, Dallas film festivals; Cannes Film Festival -- market.) Running time: 92 MIN.

With: With: Ryan Akin, Betty Buckley, Dana Wheeler-Nicholson, Jon Gries, Justin Arnold, Noell Coet, Robert Longstreet, Don Pirl, Juli Erickson.

More Film

  • Actor Javier Bardem looking at chinstrap

    Berlin: Javier Bardem to Star in ‘Sanctuary’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

  • TrustNordisk Pre-Sells Sonja Henie Biopic 'White

    TrustNordisk Pre-Sells Sonja Henie Biopic 'White Swan' to Major Territories (EXCLUSIVE)

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

  • BAFTA Awards Rubber Stamps Some Oscar

    BAFTA Awards Rubber Stamps Some Oscar Frontrunners, Upsets Others

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

  • African Filmmaker Idrissa Ouedraogo Poses with

    Prolific African Filmmaker Idrissa Ouedraogo Dies at 64

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

  • The Real Estate

    Berlin Film Review: 'The Real Estate'

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

  • BAFTA Winners: Updating Live

    BAFTA Awards: 'Three Billboards' Conquers With Five Trophies Including Best Film, Best Actress

    Though scarcely distinguishable from scads of other indie dramedies about coming of age in small-town Texas, “Five Time Champion” is modestly amusing in its depiction of a discontented high schooler’s efforts to make sense of his sexual identity while observing the odd behavior of adults in his orbit. Writer-director Berndt Mader evidences a generosity of […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content