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32 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201divider(718) 488 8900
A film by Joel DeMott and Jeff Kreines
Produced by Peter Davis
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In their final year at Muncie's Southside High School, a group of seniors hurtles toward maturity with a combination of joy, despair, and an aggravated sense of urgency. They are also learning a great deal, both in and out of school, that is often quite different from what school officials think they are teaching.

Part of the acclaimed Middletown series.

"Every bit as relevant today as when it came out in 1983" - The Cleveland Plain Dealer

"One of the best and most scarifying reports on American life. It has the characters and language—as well as the vitality and honesty... haunts the memory."The New York Times

“Truly scandalous.”J. Hoberman, The Village Voice

"Remains one of the most essential films ever made about American youth."Nashville Scene

"An earthy mix of disrespect for authority, foul language, drunkenness, pot-smoking, interracial sex, and just hanging out."Journal of American Culture

"Has a rare and gripping sense of gritty honesty."San Francisco Chronicle

"SEVENTEEN went from being banned from broadcast by PBS to success on the festival circuit and a theatrical release. Even today, it is easy to see why the film was controversial.”Harvard Film Archive

"Positively crucial to documentary film history. SEVENTEEN is loaded with tap beer, pot smoke, feathered hair, wood paneling, F-bombs, and copious amounts of classic rock, including a radio DJ’s spin of Seger’s ageless “Against the Wind,” requested at kegger’s end by a drunken youth in dedication to a buddy who died just hours earlier in a car crash... SEVENTEEN is somehow funny, in part for how defiantly its editing bucks the old-school rules of vérité in its search for one darkly comic juxtaposition after another."Film Comment

Grand Jury Prize Documentary, 1985 Sundance Film Festival

120 minutes / color
Copyright: 1982
DVD Sale: $24.98

Subject areas:
African American Studies, American Studies, Cinema Studies, Cultural Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Economic Sociology, Education, Family Relations, Film History, History (U.S.), Human Sexuality, Media Studies, North America, Race and Racism, Sociology, Urban Studies, Youth Issues

Related Links:
The Films of Peter Davis

Related Titles:
Middletown: This classic series, created by Emmy and Academy Award winner Peter Davis, explores both the continuity and the change embodied in the people and institutions of one Midwestern community: Muncie, Indiana.

Kati With an I: In three tumultuous days, the future of one Alabama high school senior is cast into doubt.

Northern Light: A beautiful and candid portrait of the American working class experience set against the backdrop of a town's snowmobile race.

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