Cleveland International Film Festival } April 7 – April 18, 2021 } Playhouse Square

SPLITSVILLE

 

Year: 1998
Country: USA
Run Time: 93 minutes

Society has come a long way since Disney's original "Parent Trap" gave an impressionable generation the simplistic false hope that a little twin scheming and slapstick could somehow force divorced mothers and fathers back together. Compare/contrast with SPLITSVILLE, a savvy comedy that manages to be realistic about broken marriages and the kids left holding the pieces. When James' dad walks out, the boy fears he's become another single-parent statistic, especially when preening pal Chris, who can boast of a matched set of original parents, openly disdains him. Their feud spreads from the soccer field to the classroom, thorughout the whole fifth grade, prompting James to form a new clubhouse called the Loyal Order of Divorce. It's part kiddie self-esteem and support group . . . and part "Lord of the Flies," as children whose folks aren't divorced try to qualify for membership, by any means necessary. Underscoring the funny stuff is a sly look at how younsters on an unmerry-go-round of rotating visitation rights and extended stepfamilies struggle to comprehend the adult world's sometimes-juevenile practices of sex, love, estrangement, and exclusion.

Screenplay
Gordon Cassidy, Patrick Baroude

Director
Lynn Hamrick

Producer
Anne Francois, Angelika Bolliger

Cinematography
Joe Montgomery

Editing
Gail Yasunaga

Principal Cast
David Berry, Jesse Littlejohn, Stephanie Sawyer, Gradie Hutt, Maurice Bernard, Jeff Gendelman, Loryn Locklin

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