Jim Carroll

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SXSW 2012: Leagues arrives in Texas

First post from OTR at SXSW guest writer Leagues O’Toole I left a day early for this trip and just as well. Delta Airlines had a fun surprise 24-hour detour planned for me, taking in Atlanta and San Antonio from …

Mon, Mar 12, 2012, 16:03

   

First post from OTR at SXSW guest writer Leagues O’Toole

I left a day early for this trip and just as well. Delta Airlines had a fun surprise 24-hour detour planned for me, taking in Atlanta and San Antonio from where I was driven to Austin in the company of three other beleaguered travellers, one of which turned out to be the younger brother of prodigious actors Macauly and Kieran Culkin. The slack-haired young Rory Culkin (star of the excellent Mean Creek) told me about his new movie Electrick Children which was premiering at SXSW Film.

When I arrived in Austin, my curiosity overcame my exhaustion, and I went to see the film at the Stateside Cinema. Rebecca Thomas’ debut turned out to be a beautiful accompaniment to my bleary, jet-lagged state of mind. The Utah desert is illuminated in blazing colour as this semi-surrealist modern-day Immaculate Conception story unfolds. A mysteriously pregnant 15-year-old Mormon virgin played by Julia Garner ends up in the unlikely company of a group of deadbeat skate-punks central to which is the charmingly damaged Clyde (Culkin). Despite its familiar coming-of-age nuances, Electrick Children has a fine young cast, a stylish, vivid look and the sort odd-ball storyline that’ll keep you interested, if not slightly confused.

And so into the rainy Austin night… SXSW veterans have rarely witnessed rain in this city at this time of year, let alone frequent blasts of thunder and lightning. And as I look out my 21st floor hotel window perusing the relentless downpour and shuddering rumbles of sound and light across the Downtown landscape the mischievous words of my 3-year old son take on a more menacing Omen-esque hue. “Dad, there will be a big storm in America and everyone will die. And you will die, Dad. AHAHAHAHA.”