About Features Reviews Community Screenings Archives Home
January 2005


by Kam Williams



Distributor: Polychrome Pictures
Directors: Lori Silverbush and Michael Skolnick
Producers: Lori Silverbush and Michael Skolnick
Screenwriter: Lori Silverbush
Cast: Judy Marte, Paola Mendoza, Anny Mariano, Don Parma, Dominic Colon
Running time: 86 minutes





Rated R for pervasive profanity, ethnic slurs, street violence, graphic depiction of drug addiction, premarital sexuality, teen pregnancy and mature themes.

Trio of Troubled Latinas Linked by Lawlessness in Super-Realistic Slice-of-Life Drama

17 year-old Marisol (Paola Mendoza) is a drug-addicted, single-mom with a fragile psyche who divides her time between fighting her demons and fighting with the foster care system for custody of her baby. Oz (Judy Marte), also 17, is a tough tomboy who deals drugs in the same Jersey City slum. And sheltered Suzette (Anny Mariano), 15, resides in the neighborhood, too, and it looks like her attraction to a ghetto gangsta' (Don Parma) will land her on he wrong side of the law. In fact all three of these Latinas eventually end up behind bars, and this is what links their parallel, if ill-fated, paths in On the Outs, a super-realistic slice-of-life drama directed by Lori Silverbush and Michael Skolnik. Based on the true cases culled from juvenile courts, this movie sensitively portrays the perilous predicament of girls growing up in today's inner city. Shot documentary style against graphic urban backdrops in gritty environs, the movie is nothing if not convincing in delivering a gripping authentic air. The leads, besides being extensively easy on the eyes, are all first-rate actresses, which means you tend forget that this is fiction. And the supporting cast, comprised almost exclusively of amateurs discovered on location, is almost as good. Combining all of the above with three engaging storylines, in-your-face cinematography, and a sobering message, makes On the Outs a female empowerment flick not to be missed.