August 20, 2018 4:54 pm
Following its Hulu and theatrical release this past weekend, Minding the Gap by Bing Liu is now the best reviewed film of 2018 (per Metacritic), a New York Times Critics' Pick, and maintains 100% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Barry Jenkins (Medicine for Melancholy, Moonlight) and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk both took to Twitter to rave about film, Jenkins writing "The heart in this film is so damn big."
MINDING THE GAP is an endlessly engrossing film about the pain and struggle of everyday kids becoming everyday adults. Part skate doc part cinematic treatise on the tension inherent in boys becoming men, the film’s strength lies in Bing’s insistence on pushing, gently...
— Barry Jenkins (@BarryJenkins) August 17, 2018
The powerful, touching documentary Minding The Gap is now available on @Hulu & select screenings. I can’t recommend it enough. Congrats to Bing Liu on capturing this important story of three friends that find salvation from their abusive childhoods through their love for skating. pic.twitter.com/unHiF8nMY0
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) August 18, 2018
Troves of viewers also turned to Twitter to process and laud Minding the Gap – the common thread of their reactions was intense gratitude to Liu and the film:
If you have gone through child abuse, mental illness, depression or just love skateboarding in general you NEED to watch “Minding The Gap” on Hulu! This documentary is amazing and hits so many different feels for me growing up.
— Eddie Cote (@XECOTEX) August 20, 2018
Minding The Gap (@MindingGapFilm) is the best documentary I’ve ever seen. Absolutely perfect. As a social worker for a decade I’ve never seen a better portrayal of parenthood, poverty, child abuse, racism, and chosen family. Please watch it and support it! Thank you, Bing
— viking hips (@vikinghips) August 19, 2018
Aa someone who grew up in small-town Illinois and knew the struggles of low-income kids my age, MINDING THE GAP (which just came to Hulu) hit extremely close to home for me. It's a heartbreaking, cathartic doc about poverty and how we cope with abuse, and it's essential viewing.
— Clint Worthington (@alcohollywood) August 18, 2018
I may be preaching to the choir here, but Minding the Gap is fantastic. A deeply realized doc about very Midwestern ideas of responsibility, masculinity and cycles of abuse across multiple fault lines, all through the lens of a skateboarding film. Make the time to see this one.
— Max Havey (@MaxHavey) August 19, 2018
Join the conversation using #MindingtheGap.
Praise for Minding the Gap:
"Astonishing... a rich, devastating essay on race, class and manhood in 21st-century America."
– A. O. Scott, New York Times
"Extraordinary... Minding the Gap is an essay that never feels like an essay, an intelligent and compassionate grappling with some of the most painful issues presently haunting the body politic: toxic masculinity and domestic violence, economic depression and a deep, existential despair."
– Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times
"There isn't a word of explicit politics in the film, but Liu's confrontation with abuse and trauma as a way of confronting its unconscious legacy, of changing one's own behavior and improving one's own life and the lives of one's own family and friends, is an essentially and crucially political act."
– Richard Brody, The New Yorker
"An extraordinary feat of filmmaking... Liu's intimacy with his subjects becomes contagious, to the point where their small victories are thrilling and their failures feel devastating."
– Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic
"Heartbreaking, raw, and true"
– Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly
"A powerful film about escaping the loop of poverty and toxic masculinity in Rust Belt America"
– Anna Menta, Newsweek
"A documentary with an angry undercurrent, it’s also an affectionate study of Mr. Liu’s longtime, hardcore skateboarding friends—each of whom is trying to map a course from mangled childhood to unsteady maturity. As such, it possesses an intimacy that could never be acquired without years of shared experience, and heartache. And probably road rash."
– John Anderson, Wall Street Journal
"A powerful saga"
– David Edelstein, Vulture
"What starts as a raucous celebration of youthful freedom consciously expands to cover the bonds of friendship, racial identity, the hard slog of being responsible, and the generational after-effects of trauma."
– Robert Abele, The Wrap
"Liu creates an unforgettable film experience that will knock the wind out of you."
– Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"A raw portrait of trauma and catharsis, and an affecting example of how non-fiction cinema can be a vehicle for genuine empathy."
– Nick Schager, The Daily Beast
"Bing's movie stands out for the complexity of its integrity, and its ability to reveal his own experiences empathically."
– K. Austin Collins, Vanity Fair
"An incredible work of storytelling, occasionally funny and deeply humanistic."
– Nina Metz, Chicago Tribune
"It's a sight to behold, the way Minding the Gap organically evolves from a meditative portrait of skateboarding – complete with gorgeously fluid Steadicam shots of boarders ripping down city streets – into a nuanced character study of repressed trauma."
– Vikram Murthi, AV Club
All upcoming theatrical runs/festival screenings:
August 17-23 - Metrograph - New York, NY (Bing Liu in-person opening weekend)
August 17-23 - Laemmle Monica Film Center - Santa Monica, CA
Aug 17-22 - The Roxie Theater - San Francisco, CA
August 17-23 - Austin Film Society - Austin, TX
August 19 - Jacob Burns Film Center - Pleasantville, NY (Bing Liu in-person)
August 24-26 - Mosaic World Film Festival - Rockford, IL (Filmmakers and participants attending)
August 24-29 - Northwest Film Forum - Seattle, WA
August 26 - Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival - Middlebury, VT (Executive Producer Steve James attending)
August 31 - September 13 - Gene Siskel Film Center - Chicago, IL (Filmmakers in attendance at select screenings)
September 4, 6 - Docutah International Film Festival - St. George, UT
September 10-13, VIFF Year Round - Vancouver, BC
September 15 - Big Eddy Film Festival - Narrowsburg, NY
September 26-October 4 - Bergen International Film Festival - Bergen, NO
September 26 - Irish Film Institute Documentary Film Festival - Dublin, IE
September 26 - IFI Documentary Film Festival - Dublin, IE
September 27 - Bryan Mawr Film Institute - Bryn Mawr, PA
September 29-October 1 - Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema - Toronto, ON
October 27 - Unorthodocs - Columbus, OH
The film has won 29 awards since its world premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival this past January, where it won the Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking. The film won Best Documentary at Sarasota, Minneapolis St. Paul, RiverRun, Nashville, Mountainfilm, CAAMfest, Docs Against Gravity and Biografilm Festival. It won over juries and audiences alike, winning the Audience Award at Full Frame, Sheffield Doc/Fest, the San Diego Asian Film Festival Spring Showcase, Docs Against Gravity, the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival and Mountainfilm.
Find all upcoming screenings here.