Riders (2001)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Coming-of-Age, Psychological Drama, Road Movie  |   Run Time - 95 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Alex (Bodine Alexander) is a troubled teenager living in rural Maryland. She's distraught when she learns that her neglectful mother, Jessica (Jane Beard), has a new boyfriend. Alex antagonizes Ned (Don Harvey of Casualties of War), a sporadically employed trucker, from the start, and he lets her know that he won't tolerate it. There's a threat implicit in his every word to her. When Alex walks in on him taking her ten year-old sister, Sara (Sarah Stusek) out of the bath, she fears the worst, but Jessica won't listen to her warnings, so she decides to run. She takes Sara in the middle of the night and they hit the road. Alex decides to take Sara to New Orleans, where she's heard her absent father was last seen. Their car breaks down and the girls travel by bus. When Alex learns that Sara wants to be a singer, she takes her to a bar before it opens and persuades the proprietors to let her little sister perform on-stage. But later, at a cheap motel, Alex is approached by a friendly college student (Jerry Richardson) and leaves Sara alone in their room overnight. The next morning, she returns to find that Sara got locked out of the room, and called Jessica. Ned is on his way to pick them up. Unable to persuade Sara to keep running, Alex leaves her at the motel. Robbed on the bus, she arrives in New Orleans broke, and has no idea how to track down her father. In desperation, she calls home for help, leading to a final confrontation with Ned. Shot on digital video, Riders marks the feature debut of writer/director Doug Sadler.

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Keywords

boyfriend, conflict, daughter, runaway [from home], sister, teenagers, mother, motel