DIRECTORS: Sasha King, Brian O'Donnell

Tickets for the Friday, June 17, Castro screening are available for free to LGBTQ youth, Genders & Sexualities Alliance (GSA) student members, and GSA advisors serving students in K–12 schools. Email youthinmotion@frameline.org to get tickets.

Bay Area Premiere

Expected to attend: Director Brian O'Donnell, Producer Ellen Kollar

A spark of attraction, a budding romance, a dark family secret: tender first love between a pair of college freshmen is put to the test when a tragic connection from far in their past is unexpectedly revealed.

Benny is a first-year student at a leafy college in his hometown of Akron, Ohio. On the prompting of a friend, he joins a pickup touch football game, where he meets—and asks for the phone number of—handsome fellow freshman athlete Christopher. Flirting over text messages turns to dating and the hope of something more. In the midst of the excitement of their burgeoning romance, the pair sets off on a road trip to Florida for spring break, propelled by encouraging hugs and waves from Benny’s thoroughly supportive parents. Along the way, however, the two young men discover that they share a connection to a tragedy from years before. It is a revelation that will test their bonds with their families and each other.

Akron offers a gay coming-of-age tale with a refreshing twist—none of its characters are in search of self- or familial acceptance, because they’ve all already achieved it. Set against the backdrop of Midwestern suburbia, where familial cohesion and domestic stability are cultural commodities, the film instead explores the damage that can be done by other kinds of buried secrets, and the resilience and forgiveness it takes to heal that damage.

— Michael LoPresti

AT&T Audience Award Text Voting Code: F100

Co-presented by:
Hayward Unified School District
Oakland Unified School District
San Francisco LGBT Community Center
San Francisco Unified School District

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