In his sophomore directorial effort, filmmaker Jeffrey Blitz takes his chances with the fictional narrative ‘Rocket Science,’ putting his skills as a documentarian temporarily aside.
Blitz’s debut film, the 2002 Oscar-nominated documentary ‘Spellbound,’ delved into the competitive world of high school spelling bees. Now, having written several episodes of ‘The Office’ and with a couple more commercial credits under his belt, he’s finally brought ‘Rocket Science’ to fruition.
With echoes of the John Hughes films that defined the youth of the 1980s and 1990s and a cast reminiscent of the rotating regulars in the Brat Pack, ‘Rocket Science’ tries to make sense of love, betrayal and adolescence one syllable at a time.
Winning the Dramatic Directing Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, ‘Rocket Science’ recounts the pangs of high school days through the eyes of one of the most awkward kids in school. Blitz’s first stab at fictional narrative seamlessly dives into the new wave of independent filmmaking we have seen with films akin to ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ and ‘Napoleon Dynamite.’
On Oct. 4, the Film and Video Center held a screening of ‘Rocket Science.’ At his recent visit to the University of California Irvine, Blitz gave insight into the film process and his thoughts on where he stands with other directors.
Blitz created ‘Rocket Science’ in the same vein as those trials and tribulations of growing up and essentially defends the spirit of our times.
Embracing the absurdities of the inner workings of love, betrayal and revenge, Reece Thompson is Hal Hefner at the cusp of puberty. Having to deal with a crippling stutter, he is lured into the realm of intensely competitive high school public speaking with the promise of love in the alluring form of the other woman. How he comes to terms with his life