Free Ride: Drug-Running in Late-'70s Florida

A movie called Free Ride that invokes the old "gas, grass, or ass" mantra via voiceover narration pretty clearly wants viewers to consider the possibility that nothing comes easily, especially when said movie is about drug-running in late-'70s Florida.

But Shana Betz's autobiographical film, in which Anna Paquin stars as the writer-director's mother Christina, barely delves into the physical and emotional fallout of this heyday before walking it back with an epilogue that reveals (mild spoilers to follow) things didn't actually turn out so badly in the end.

Christina and her two daughters (one of whom would go on to make this movie) go from sleeping in their car to living in a house of their own mere weeks after the matriarch starts working for a powerful drug smuggler; the kids are so fixated on the shiny new digs that they either don't question the implications of their new homestead or simply don't care.

Location Info


Cinema Village

22 E. 12th St.
New York, NY 10003

Category: Movie Theaters

Region: East Village


Free Ride
Directed by Shana Betz
Phase 4 Films
Opens January 10, Cinema Village

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It's clear to viewers that this can't be headed anywhere good long before it dawns on Christina, who makes for such a myopic protagonist that summoning anything other than a mild distaste for her requires more effort than the character warrants.

Free Ride doesn't use the benefit of over three decades' worth of hindsight to condemn, condone, or even really comment on most of this; the film is content to merely document certain happenings and hope you find them as interesting as it does.

My Voice Nation Help

I thought it was a great movie, considering those who watch it will not
know what scenes were cut out completely. The Sarasota, FL bar scene
and all in it, cut out...Aay Mate...The Sarasota school scene, where
are the girls? Cut out.. That is a disappointment for all that
participated and waited 2 years to see. The movie needed to last 1/2
hr. longer. But all in all, it was a great production True Story. I
like the mix you put in it. It was a pleasure and FL Boy enjoyed
participation. Cast was wonderful. Wish I could have kept some
photos........but rules are rules, right Mr. Moyer....Good job Annie
and everyone else.



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