Students Attend Alumnus Film in Local Theaters

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Point Loma Nazarene University
Contact: Kalyn McMackin (760) 685-3312
Point TV: Channel 23 Public Relations Manager.
Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358
Date: September 16, 2013
Written by: Kalyn McMackin

Students Attend Alumnus Film in Local Theaters

    The San Diego community welcomed the local debut of PLNU alumni Destin Daniel Cretton’s film “Short Term 12” Friday at La Jolla’s ArcLight Cinemas. What started five years ago as a Master’s thesis has since captured national attention, including those of Point Loma Nazarene University students.

    “I had heard great things about Short Term 12, from individuals I knew as well as prominent film critics,” said Erich Rau, Point TV’s station manager. “I thought this would be a great opportunity for us, as PLNU students, to be encouraged and uplifted by the quality work of an alumnus.”

In 2009, Cretton won “Best American Short Film” at the coveted Sundance Film Festival later followed by achieving the Nicholl’s Fellowship, a $50,000 cash prize awarded to select applicants. In March of 2013, Cretton entered his film into the South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival and won the prestigious Grand Jury and Audience Awards for a narrative feature. Since then, his film has hit 63 theaters across the country.

    Inspired by his own time working at facilities for troubled kids, the 2001 graduate wrote and directed “Short Term 12,” a story told through the eyes of Grace, a twenty-something supervisor at a foster-care facility for at-risk teenagers. Grace’s own difficult past is made all the more clearer with the arrival of a new intake at the facility: a gifted yet troubled teenage girl with whom Grace has an electric connection.

    “The writing was spectacular. I've scarcely heard more intimate, authentic dialogue, and the pacing of the film was near perfect,” said Rau. “Cretton has a deep understanding of how to develop characters and plot simultaneously.”

    Similarly, Film Studies major Marinna Martens, was moved by the film’s emotional yet powerful message.

    “It inspired me to care more about people who are hurting emotionally and because of their past are unable to trust and love others,” said Martens.

    For Rau, it was Cretton’s work ethic and determination that stood out.  “I was inspired by Cretton himself and the hard work and dedication he put into Short Term 12,” said Cretton. “I love to see filmmakers who still care about the art and care about the people they are working with.”

    The continued and accruing success of Cretton’s film is reason enough to attend a local showing of the film.
    “Short Term 12” is now playing at La Jolla’s ArcLight Cinemas and Hillcrest’s Landmark Theatres.