In 2010, Crystal Moselle met and started talking to a group of six odd-looking boys walking around Manhattan, learning that they had basically grown up isolated with their mother in an apartment. Homeschooled, they had had very little contact with the outside world and their only points of reference seemed to be all the Hollywood movies they had watched on VCR at home. By reenacting scenes from the films, a world of imagination opened up within the walls of that apartment. This documentary gives us the background and clues to the mental state of the boys’ parents; ethically, the film is not uncomplicated considering those problems and the age of the boys. A little messy in its structure, but oddly fascinating and interesting as a comment on the power of movies and a parent’s responsibility.
2015-U.S. 90 min. Color. Produced by Hunter Gray, Crystal Moselle, Alex Orlovsky, Izabella Tzenkova. Directed by Crystal Moselle.
Last word: “I didn’t actually do interviews with the family until two years into the film. I was just mainly hanging out, following their little adventures, and just being there with them. They were shooting different things, and I was just there. And then I started doing these interviews with them, and that’s when I first got Oscar’s [the father] interview. I only interviewed him twice, but all the other stuff is like, vérité observations of him. I guess I only really confronted him twice, and they were years apart. The last interview was around November 2014, so he was at a very different place than he was years before that.” (Moselle, The Dissolve)