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A group of anthropology students take a road trip to the family ranch of one of them for a weekend of drinking and taking drugs, the latter under the pretense of researching ancient rituals. They run in trouble, however, because the brother that lives on the seemingly abandoned premises displays disturbing behavior in his search for a "bride" and a stranger named Delgado turns up to enact revenge for a misdeed in the past by one of the students. Written by
Peter Iliff has come a long way since his first successful screenplay, Point Break. His new film, Rites of Passage, is a complete departure from the Hollywood norm. The film focuses around a group of friends in Santa Barbara who take a lot of drugs and trip out on some ranch. The film is clearly directed towards a younger audience, and for the budget they were given, I think they did a great job. There isn't much past the surface of the film, but it works great as a popcorn thriller that I enjoyed with my friends. It was great to see all of the recognizable spots around Isla Vista and SB where Rites of Passage was shot. Would I watch it again? Maybe not. But it was certainly an entertaining and relevant film for a college student like myself.
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