Best Video Film & Cultural Center is proud to partner with Factory 25 distribution to screen the acclaimed new independent feature film, “Ham On Rye” on its initial theatrical release. This is a virtual screening—Best Video’s first foray into streaming!—and tickets are $10 and available at this link. Half the proceeds go to BVFCC. The ticket price is good for a three-day rental period.
“Ham on Rye” is a coming-of-age comedy centered on the nervous excitement of youth and the strange horror of entering adulthood. Tyler Taormina’s directing debut uses an expansive ensemble of over one hundred performers, including non-actors, musicians, 90’s Nickelodeon child stars, and more, to explore a suburban community’s relationship with a prom-like ritual and the decay of the human spirit. It begins with the crowd-pleasing spirit of a John Hughes movie and fades slowly into an off-kilter dystopia with the energy of “Dazed and Confused.”
The recently-released movie is garnering ecstatic reviews. It currently boasts a 91% rating at Rotten Tomatoes. New York Times critic Glenn Kenny, in a review published on Oct. 22, designated “Ham on Rye” as a New York Times Critic’s Pick. According to Kenny, “With his first feature, the director and co-writer Tyler Taormina delivers something at first familiar and then increasingly — but never ostentatiously — strange. ‘Ham on Rye’ can be taken as an allegory for middle-class suburban life in America, but it’s got added value as a potent mood piece, accomplished with a bare minimum of means.”
The opportunity to showcase “Ham on Rye” came courtesy of longtime Best Video member and donor Kevin Anton, who was the film’s editor and an executive producer. Anton write in an email:
We like to think of this film as a love letter to suburban hometowns. Tyler, the director, based the film on his own experiences returning to the town he grew up in. He found an oppressive loneliness to the streets and houses of his youth, with many of his childhood friends gone off to the cities. I think there’s truth in that, but I also see the film as a celebration of local gathering spots and the ever-changing cycle of a community over time.
I think this year especially we’ve all developed a greater appreciation for the shared physical places that embody our community. I grew up going to Best Video and I am so grateful that it’s been able to stay around and grow into something so much more than a video rental store. I’m honored they agreed to screen our film, and I look forward to running into old friends in the New Arrivals aisle someday soon.