A group of teenage students goes through life defying authority and spreading chaos in a private school. Damian feels pressured to participate in these cruel abuses provoked by Geronimo and his squad, making Enzo`s life miserable.
During a spectacular riot in class, Damian becomes aware of Enzo's anguish and pain. The laughter and rejoicing turns into cruel abominations, and the innocent games generate more bitterness than enjoyment. Now Damian not only has to face Enzo, but himself as well.
Innocent and adolescent games can border on cruelty, becoming violent for some, joyful for others. Duality accompanies us always, but it is during adolescent years that awareness of it is difficult.
I have always been interested in stories of young teenagers, especially when it is palpable that the group identity is not the sum of individual identities. The concept of the mass-man (by intellectual Ortega y Gasset) occurs in many situations throughout life. By affinity or self-experience I believe high school is the best place to portray it — it is where we shape our personality. The mass-man feels safe knowing he is identical to the others.
In Surfaces, a group of teenagers repeatedly abuse a weaker and smaller adolescent, all within a framework of order and artificial calmness imposed by the school. What I want to differentiate is not the victim, but one of the bullies, who begins to question himself. The narrative is posed from Damian´s point of view. What is the real purpose of his actions? Acceptance? A sense of belonging?
At a distance, these acts and games may seem innocent, juvenile and without prejudice, but are they really?
[Viddsee Community] Connect with the filmmaker, Martin Aliaga and learn more about the making of this film here!