Posted by Larry Gleeson
Sean Baker’s Red Rocket, a story of a washed up, 20 year veteran performer in the adult film industry who returns home for more of the same, screened last night at the 2021 AFI FEST. Red Rocket, follows Mikey Saber (played by a compelling Simon Rex), as he futilely careens in and out of harrowing situations in dark places never fully grasping the ramifications of his actions and choices.
Red Rocket is Sean Baker at his best in the low, low budget film making. Providing a snapshot of Mikey and the socially marginalized characters that are in his orbit, Baker elevates Red Rocket with snappy dialogue, carefully executed camera work, and the trust he places in the audience. Rex, Bree Elrod as Lexi, and Suzanna Son as Strawberry, deliver riveting performances with exquisite line execution. Captivating work. Highly Recommended!
And, if that wasn’t enough (and it was), the Q & A immediately following the screening led by AFI Programming Director Sarah Harris, got a little saucy. Baker and Rex took exception when an audience member, who coincidentally works in the adult film industry and performs in Ninja Thyberg’s Pleasure, screening tonight, stated his displeasure with a term thrown out at Red Rocket’s end. Stay tuned!
Simon Rex is a participant in the free Virtual Indie Roundtable today at 1:00 P.M.
The AFI FEST continues through tomorrow night. Visit fest.afi.com for more information including ticketing and film schedule. The Closing Night film is the Will Smith led King Richard – the story of Richard Williams and his quest to make his daughters, Venus and Serena, the pinnacles of women’s tennis.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the movies…
*Featured photo of Simon Rex as Mikey Saber in Sean Baker’s Red Rocket. (from AFI.com)