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With sponsorship from Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival & Prefix Institute of Contemporary Art
Pleasure Dome is pleased to present the Canadian premiere of Stay The Same Never Change. Written, shot and directed by Laurel Nakadate, this debut feature film situates itself at the crossroads of visual fact and narrative fiction. Though the story is scripted, it is set in the real Kansas City homes of its amateur actors. It’s a story about people and the lives they’re living while wanting more. Whether it’s a family man looking for beauty or a young woman obsessed with polar bears and Oprah, the characters in this film reveal quiet lives laden with sadness and desire. The film’s soundtrack features original music composed by Owen Ashworth and performed by Casiotone for the Painfully Alone.
“Hovering somewhere between Todd Solondz and Harmony Korine, “Stay the Same Never Change,” controversial video artist Laurel Nakadate’s feature debut, probes the hollowness of Middle America via sensual depiction of assorted lonely teenage girls desperately seeking a way out — or in. Loosely composed as a succession of vignettes by Nakadate, but enacted with disaffected flatness by nubile nonprofessionals in their own Kansas City homes, the provocative pic, is often disturbing and absorbing…” Variety
“Artist and director Laurel Nakadate takes us beyond the pre-packaged and sanitized world of The Jonas Brothers and Hannah Montana to the true heartland of America and the tween-aged girls that inhabit it. In Kansas City, pop culture is something to be twisted and reshaped, relationships are either non-existent or re-fabricated, time is unstructured and teasing. At the heart of these girls’ lives and this innovative work of cinema is a quest for understanding and a sense of place. The risks run and solutions posed engender both laughs and tears. The film’s amateur actors and non-linear narrative bring an unnerving, utterly human face to the challenges of young-womanhood in a world that would prefer our girls watch the Disney Channel.” Christian Del Moral, Film Society of Lincoln Centre
Laurel Nakadate is a photographer, video artist and filmmaker. She was born in Austin, Texas and raised in Ames, Iowa. She received a B.F.A. from Tufts University and The School of The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and an M.F.A. in photography from Yale University. Her work has been exhibited at P.S.1/MoMA, The Yerba Buena, The Getty Museum, and The Reina Sofia. In 2009, her first feature film, STAY THE SAME NEVER CHANGE, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and went on to be featured in New Directors/ New Films at The Museum of Modern Art and Lincoln Center. Her second feature film, THE WOLF KNIFE, premiered at the 2010 Los Angeles Film Festival. Nakadate’s work is in many public and private collections including the Yale University Art Gallery, the Saatchi Collection and the Museum of Modern Art. She is represented by Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects and lives in New York City. . In January 2011 her work will be included in, “Staging Action: Performance in Photography Since 1960” at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York.