"Ultimately Unacceptable Coming-of-Age Drama"
What You Need To Know:
SKATE KITCHEN speaks to the trials of teenage life, including how to survive relationships and the drama they bring. Many scenes in the streets and the skate park enhance this interesting drama about community and the bonds of friendship. Candid conversations about young adulthood, love and relationships encapsulate what it’s like to navigate the muddy waters of being a teenager. Despite some slow parts, SKATE KITCHEN demonstrates what community can do to strengthen someone’s life but has a strong Romantic worldview with excessive foul language, lewd content and marijuana use.
Community is the main theme of SKATE KITCHEN, an independent drama focusing on a teenage girl and her two groups of skateboard friends, a coming of age story depicting the uncertainty and the difficulties of growing up. Shot mainly in the New York City streets and a skate park, SKATE KITCHEN gives viewers an inside look at the skateboard culture, but it has a strong Romantic worldview with excessive foul language, lewd content and marijuana use.
A teenage girl and highly talented skateboarder, Camille, sustains an injury during practice. Promising her mom she won’t skateboard again, she sneaks out of the house to a skateboard park, where she quickly makes friends with a group of girls: Janay, Eliza, Indigo, and Ruby. This group of girls quickly welcomes her into their circle of friends as well as into the skating community.
Having chosen to live with her father since she was five, Camille’s view of a healthy male relationship is skewed when she leaves her father to live with her mother after her relationship with her father changes because she’s growing up and is no longer his tomboy. Her mom finds out Camille’s skating despite her promise, culminating in a violent altercation between Camille and her mother. She leaves her mother, gets a job at the local grocery store and lives with these four girls. She also quickly acclimates to the party and drug scene.
Figuring out whom she is as well as how to survive on her own, she and her friends wade through the tough times in life, including drug overdoses, injuries and the sting of betrayal. She begins a relationship with a fellow skater and co-worker Devon (Jaden Smith.) However, she finds out one of her skateboard friends, Janay, has had a previous relationship with Devon. Once Janay discovers she’s been skating with Devon and his friends, it severs her friendship with the group of girls, leaving Camille feeling hopeless and homeless. She rejoins Devon’s group but, eventually, apologizes and rejoins her girlfriends. Her relationship with both groups sheds a new perspective on love and helps her understand what love and community really mean.
This coming of age drama depicts life as a teenage girl living in the city trying to find her way, both literally and metaphorically. Taking place entirely in New York City, the cinematography encapsulates life among the city’s skateboard community. Although the plot sometimes moves a bit slowly, appearing as though nothing is really taking place, it depicts the beauty and bonding experience that community can bring. Camille finally feels she’s a part of something bigger than herself. SKATE KITCHEN beautifully portrays the void people feel apart from Christ, though no one eventually finds any solace, peace, or joy in Jesus or faith.
Camille lives with her mother, but as soon as she makes these friends, she’s too quick to forsake this parental relationship. However, once she sever ties with her girlfriends, she reconciles with her mother, who teaches her that no relationship is severed forever and that forgiveness can be achieved through humility and apology. The end scene of the male and female skaters joined together skating through the streets demonstrates the tight bonds that form when community is achieved and that no trial is too difficult when you have true friends. Through this, Camille has a newfound love and respect for both her mother as a parent and herself as a young woman.
Although the plot is intriguing, giving viewers an inside look into the skateboard culture, SKATE KITCHEN has a high level of sexual content including sex between same-sex and heterosexual teenagers, pornography and several references to genitalia. There is also excessive foul language, with over 100 uses of obscenities, plus brief nudity and marijuana use. Therefore, SKATE KITCHEN is an unacceptable movie.