No Alternative (2018) Poster

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10/10
A Touching Movie
Ahmadkkotb30 April 2019
No the first time watching a Coming-of-Age movie so I know how these generally go, but there's something different about this movie, teens are rowdy and rude to their parents but their teen angst moves to seeking validity and the way their confusion and anger is shown, their immaturity is represented and is show and it's relatable because one way or another one felt relating to the suffering of these characters and especially I was misdiagnosed for ADHD as a teen so it hit home, definitely looking out for the producers and cast in the future
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9/10
Great indie film!!!
tutankhamundrummer17 August 2019
A well made film with bunch of emotions. Good directing.

The camera work is really on point! Michaela's Cavazos performance is fantastic! She has a well written character. Bri Da B's music is great - the music in the movie in general is perfect!

I loved all the scenes at the coffee shop!
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10/10
With the Punk intro, it blew the expectations!
bling778 May 2019
No Alternative in the first few minutes, you are introduced to a flash from the 90s, when grunge reached its peak, you are looking cookie cutter parents, and two children the world hadnt took their edge away... yet You are looking at two sides of the aisle, a gangster rapper, and an aspiring rockstar in the making after Kurt Cobains early demise when grunge was in the spotlight, sounds promising, put into the mix these arent leading a stable life, their dad who is a judge just granted bail to a violent criminal who went and murdered her family, garnering the communitys outrage and getting their father targeted and threatened

No Alternative takes one on a ride through a life, that while still close to reality, is one heck of a ride. The setting and the scenery arent that different from one would find at his own home, this warrants an emotional connection with the Characters, Thomas and Bri-Da-B are teenagers following trends of their time and channeling their expression through music, how their lives at first seemed uneventful, usual, and unworthy of being told makes one wonder what is yet to come

As the scenes go by transitioning smoothly in neat editing, one goes through teen rebellion, strict parents, parental hypocrisy putting their childs mental health behind to keep appearances, neatly showing how theres more than meets the eye at first, that, precisely makes us -as a community revisit our need to take a deeper look at mental health and the stigma associated with this, which is brilliantly hidden in the undertones of each scene until it is revealed how our protagonists are mentally afflicted with depression, an illness that was cowered to live in the shrouds of stigma in the 90s

No Alternative is in my humble opinion, a period piece, essentially captivating the most iconic era of contemporary history and doing that effortlessly, even when the plot felt heavy at some scenes the flow was natural and it balanced comic relief with emotional scenes, most importantly the neat twist that wrapped up and gender bending on the real life story that inspired the movie.

What was really remarkable about No Alternative was how great attention to details was brought to the foreground with even the slightest details looking just out of the 90s something thats worth praise considering the fiscal limitations it had being a crowdfunded indie movie, small details like Free O. J. shirt on Bri Da B during her open mic scene added a sense of chronology to a scene one can with no doubt consider the best, the aura of freedom and teen angst present in that scene was delivered to the audience

No Alternative is another teen movie about rebellion, self discovery, coping with parents, yet its not another teen movie with a happy ending where everything falls back into place, it is bitter and sweet with equal measures, with finely curated soundtrack, great acting, and refined cinematography, its a good watch and it raises our need for recognizing mental health awareness
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7/10
Probably the best '90s teen film I've seen so far . . . but it's pretty bleak.
Bozo16 September 2019
Warning: Spoilers
You will have to forgive me, I'm not feeling well and am on medication . . . My 13th birthday was just a few days before Nirvana's "Nevermind" hit record store shelves, so I was a ready-made teen for the grunge era. It's no surprise that "No Alternative" showed up on my radar while it was in production and I eagerly awaited what I hoped to be the first in a landslide of films chronicling the lives of teens during the 1990s. As another reviewer noted, this isn't the kind of movie that viewers would want watch over and over again. This is true, but it doesn't mean that it should earn the film a low rating. Marvel fans might watch a comic book movie multiple times or the same with fans of outrageous comedies, but that doesn't mean that they would warrant ten stars. At times "No Alternative" can be a difficult watch. You know from the movie's description that it deals with mental illness and even darker topics. The main characters's lives are at times chaotic, but they also tend to twist their own fates. Thomas seems to find success recording with his grunge band, but also ruins the outcome with his negative attitude based on minor friction with a bandmate. The same goes for his sister, Bridget, who goes by the stage name Bri-da-Bi. Bri really craps all over her parents, classmates and even a boy at a coffee shop who is trying to build a relationship with her. It's sometimes difficult to watch her spiral into addiction and give the finger to anyone offering help. I don't think it's necessary for every movie to have a loveable character, but it can be tough to have even a little empathy for those that populate "No Alternative." I definitely pity them, but empathy is a different question. On the other side of the coin, I really enjoyed the setting, the music and some of the performances. Michaela Cavazos shines as Bri. She nails the character and her Wesley Willis-style raps are catchy and full of hooks. Conor Proft melds with the script and keeps his character convincing, even though the twists and turns in his plotline can be erratic at times. Every person of each generation can share certain experiences with most of the individuals in their age group, but it doesn't mean they can identify with the specific characters in this movie. I will definitely recommend "No Alternative" to friends, with the warning that while it captures a certain time and place, it is most certainly not an upbeat or feel good teen film.
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10/10
Poignant touching story about love and loss set in the 90's grunge era..
michaelelian116 September 2019
I really enjoyed this film!

I was moved by the characters and their individual story lines..

Great use of music from the era to help carry this heartbreaking, intimate portrait of the difficulties of adolescence and having a voice amidst the turmoil of growing up..
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9/10
Phenomenal Music Forms More Than Just a Backdrop for this Insightful Film
monkeyboy_us16 September 2019
I was caught up in this film from the very first guitar licks - but it engaged me for more reasons than just the great music. Awesome acting, tight writing and editing, and the story does such a great job capturing both the 80's decade, and the rise (and decline) of grunge.
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8/10
Deep and Hits Very Close to Home. . .
kimmyd62015 September 2019
Full Disclosure: This hits very close to home for me. That being said, I have tried to remove myself and evaluate the movie as a separate entity from my emotions. I believe that the story nails three separate points - youth in the 1990's, mental illness and music as a societal influence. (Let us not overlook all of the era-centric "oohs" & "ahhs" from the cassette tapes, clothing, make-up and the clear bedroom telephone!)

That being said, I have never understood why being born in 1980 made me an '80's kid. Most of my "growing up" years were spent during the 1990's. Back then and not much different from now, you felt your way as you went. You waded through community and pop-cultural standards as you attempted to morph yourself to fit their mold. I do not know if you could ever really "fit in" one way or the other, but you did you damndest.

As I was in the process of finding myself, I was sort of like a Magic 8 Ball. I had a bunch of Mee all floating around inside and I never really knew which one was going to pop up each day. My style as I graduated grammar school and into high school was a weird morph of so many influences. I rocked a mix of the following cringe-worthy get-ups:

* The Valley Girl (purple leggings and a neon tee, tied up in a knot of course)

* The Hip-Hop (dressed like Aaliyah - God rest her soul - with a sports-bra-type tank, layered by a plaid flannel with matching boxers that were not-so-unintentionally sticking out of my baggy jeans)

* The Alternative -ish (Long-Sleeve Offspring SMASH Tee - "Bad Habit" was my angry jam! Don't hate - I was tame. LOL!)

* The IDKWTF (when I ventured to a local, popular high school's Battle of the Bands one year, dressed in my gangsta attire but sporting a "wallet chain" to maintain my essentials and could be seen head-banging my long dark hair to alternative music. It was perplexing to all around.)

Yes! I was very confused! I was also an artist who was trying to "find herself." I have hit so many lows in my life, as well as highs. This story - this movie - not only brought me back to relive my youth, but also woke me to a stark and polarizing realization. Even now, even at my age, having somehow survived and (dare I say) thrived, sometimes you just need to reach out. That goes both ways!

-> If you are feeling lost, low, hopeless, scared: REACH OUT!

-> If you know someone feeling lost, low, hopeless, scared: REACH OUT!

This story awakened me to a stark reality. I have floated around the universe and never even known a fraction of the passion that these siblings have. I am extremely moved and inspired.

NO ALTERNATIVE brings light to mental illness and depression, something that I am keenly familiar with, as are so many of us. It also beckons to each of us to find our deeper self. It is a wake-up call asking two questions:

"What are you doing with your life?"

and

"What cues are you missing in someone else's life?"
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10/10
A Must See!!
radhikawomack15 September 2019
Absolutely brilliant film. Very well made. Captures the time perfectly. Do yourself a favor and watch it. It has a lot of heart and portrays family so well. I enjoyed every minute of it. It is a gem of an indie film and I encourage everyone to watch it.
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9/10
Spirit of the 90s
sambrndcrg13 September 2019
Great soundtrack, great storyline. Each generation has had its own version of "Suburbia", this would be the unnofficial new version
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10/10
The 90s are back!
im_a_spider3 September 2019
As someone who grew up during the "grunge era," this film was a walk down memory lane for me. It perfectly captures how it felt to be a suburban teenager living in 90s, and yet it does way more than wax nostalgic. It's like "Dazed and Confused" for a new generation, but with a darker tone that is more appropriate for the time period. It also doesn't hold back in its honest depiction of mental illness, which means it's an emotional gut-punch at times. But, that's what makes it so good. Plus, the soundtrack is awesome!
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10/10
Best movies of early 90's Pacific northwest! It's about time. I had to tell everyone. GIVE US MORE
dawnldaley26 August 2019
More indies please!!!!! early 90's Pacific northwest! It's about time. I had to tell everyone. GIVE US MORE INDIES!!!!!
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10/10
One of Those Movies That Feels Like Life
flagnab26 August 2019
The teen girl in the center of this rough, loving story is in serious trouble. Her parents aren't helping. Her brother has his own life, or so he thinks. Dickerson hold up a mirror to our unspoken mutual obligations and find in them a mortal threat ... and a thin promise of hope.

The movie is beautifully shot, BTW. DP Robert Kraetsch's handheld camera gives juts the right touch of being there without intruding. Cavazos, Proft, Hamlin, and Erbe are well cast & deliver dimensioned, kitchen-sink performances.

I'd love to see this movie open wide ... somehow, somewhere!
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10/10
THE MC is the best actor wearing a mission of burma shirt I've ever seen!
oniongod-225 August 2019
Warning: Spoilers
But honestly--the acting in this is superb. Sincerely. They gang of both kids and adults is top notch. Perfectly performed. Sincere. Suicide.
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10/10
The Quintessential '90s Movie
VictorMisrock25 August 2019
This is not only an accurate representation of the times--1994-1995--it is also about as authentic a representation of teenage struggles during a time where everyone was supposed to be fine as I've seen in a movie to date. It also sets into motion a thematic struggle between commercialized punk rock--grunge--and the arguably more truer form of the punk rock of the time: the emergence of gangsta' rap.

In the middle of all this is Bridget "Bri Da B" Harrison. Actress Michaela Cavazos steals the show as a young girl battling mental illness who uses rap as a means of channeling her outsized, and turbulent, emotions. Cavazos manages to not only deliver an authentic performance of a teenager swimming through a sea of uneven, and pharmaceutically altered, brain chemistry, but also touch on the realm of the genius with her provocative persona Bri Da B. The movie pulls at the heart strings, while also making you LAUGH OUT LOUD; thanks primarily to Cavazos and the deft handling of her character. It will also have you rocking out to an absolutely superb soundtrack that features the likes of Mudhoney, Sebadoh, Lisa Loeb, Failure, seLf, and so many other staples from the period.

The movie has so many layers and it's the type that begs for repeat viewings. And this is a good thing. I highly recommend watching it. In a time when independent films have been marginalized in favor of "spectacle" comic book films, this movie is a breath of fresh air. We need more them. Watch. Review. Support. 10 Stars.
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10/10
We Need to Talk about Mental Health
recuc30 April 2019
The overall idea of delving deeply into mental illness with a neutral close to life with authentic and constructing how family react to someone with a mental illness isn't new to film, but to see this coming out from a micro production and being this accurate makes the film too authentic, too real. The cast performed exceptionally good albeit to Thomas' character, loved seeing representation of how teenagers view their parents

it was brave and extremely powerful to see somebody channel their personal suffering into an authentic film, thanks director and author William Dickerson for sharing this personal story!
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5/10
Nothing special here.
deloudelouvain19 June 2019
I guess I'll be the first with a negative review for this movie. Scoring this movie with the highest score possible is just ridiculous. A perfect ten means to me that you could watch this movie over and over without being bored so I challenge everybody that scored it with a ten to watch it three times in a row. It's a movie you just watch once and than forget everything about it within the week. There are some 'good' scenes, mostly music scenes, where I smiled but overal it's just not worth your time. The acting wasn't that great either. It's low budget and it just shows.
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9/10
Great 90's Movie
thothtawfik5 May 2019
Captivated the vibe of the 90s very good, reminds me of Mid90s, loved the music and the teen vibes and loved when Bri Da B curses
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