To understand Kids, one must look back at director Larry Clark’s upbringing and previous work. Born into post-war Tulsa, OK in 1943, Clark became disillusioned by the wholesome dream that was being sold to Americans. Clark turned to the fringes of society – or rather the speed freaks and gun lovers who lurked just beneath the baseball and apple pie surface – for inspiration. Capturing his friends, drug users and other local ne’er-do-wells on film, Clark released his first photography book, Tulsa in 1971, which influenced generations of artists in both subject and style.

After dabbling in music video direction, and befriending local skate crews in Manhattan’s Washington Square Park, Clark transitioned into feature filmmaking in 1995 with Kids, which gives us a day-in-the-life look at HIV-positive skateboarder Telly (Leo Fitzpatrick) – who is deflowering virgins – and his most recent victim Jennie (Chloe Sevigny), who is out to stop him from infecting anyone else. Using the same ideals behind his photography in his filmmaking, Clark aimed to give viewers an accurate look at how (some) teenagers actually behaved, and the activities they were engaging in. While Kids was initially met with mixed reviews, and damnation from some appalled viewers, it remains influential and poignant to this day. There was no sugar coating in direction or script (the latter of which Clark tapped a then-unkown Harmony Korine to helm), and Kids arguably changed the format of teen films forever. No longer were audiences able to pretend that teenagers weren’t engaging in drug use, partying, or sex and dealing with the repercussions of those activities.

After Kids, Clark continued to direct films centered around youths in different cities and towns in America, but the template remained the same: Clark was bringing audiences a gritty parallel to Hollywood’s teenage blockbusters with films like Bully, which deals with revenge and murder, Ken Park, which tackles the subject of teenage sex and abortion, and 2012’s Marfa Girl, which is about a teenage boy in a small town on the days leading up to his sixteenth birthday. Clark has said in the past he’s had reservations about releasing his work to the public because of his inability to hold back, and while his films have been met with controversy and criticism, the honesty in his work continues to feel both refreshing and necessary.

Tuesday, July 9th
The Outdoor Garden at Wythe Hotel
80 Wythe Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11249
8:30 PM

On every Tuesday evening during the months of July and August, we will be screening some of our favorite summer-themed films in the Outdoor Garden at Wythe Hotel. At the screenings there will be seating (which which will be limited, so OAK recommends arriving right on time!), and a cash bar. For our maiden screening, we’re teaming up with Soundhouse, who will be providing sound and visuals, and Killer Films to present Larry Clark’s Kids. Every Wednesday morning we will announce the following week’s film.

About Soundhouse:
Soundhouse is NYC’s premiere DJ and pro A/V rental company. Established in 2011, Soundhouse has set itself apart from the competition by offering exceptional customer service and client-friendly policies along with a large stock of the latest and most requested gear at the most competitive rates in the industry. Conveniently located just across the Williamsburg Bridge in Brooklyn, we also offer a full range of on-site services including equipment delivery, setup, and tech services. Soundhouse has serviced events big and small, from local block parties and church gatherings to parties and concerts at New York Fashion Week and Williamsburg Park. Soundhouse is proud to partner with OAK in sponsoring OAK Movie Night in the Outdoor Garden at Wythe Hotel.

About Killer Films:
Killer Films is a New York based independent film production company founded in 1995 by producers Christine Vachon and Pamela Koffler. Killer Films has produced a number of the most acclaimed American independent films over the past few decades, including Academy Award nominated Far From Heaven, Academy Award winning Boys Don’t Cry, and of course Kids. Most recently, Killer Films executive produced Todd Haynes’ five episode HBO miniseries Mildred Pierce starring Kate Winslet and Guy Pearce.