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It was supposed to be a simple documentary about roller derby. Then Mike Snell came along. In 1972, filmmaker Robert Kaylor (Carny) and producer William Richert (Winter Kills, A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon) set out to shoot a cinema verité documentary about roller derby when the 23-year-old Snell walked in to the locker room during an interview and announced his intention to become the next big roller derby sensation.
Kaylor and Richert switched gears to explore the life of the young tire company employee and discovered a world of deceit and ulterior motives as Snell relentlessly pursued his dream.
Contrasting the personal and professional success of Mike s would-be mentor, Charley O Connell, with the day-to-day struggles of Snell s unusual family life, Derby follows in the footsteps of the Maysles brothers as it exposes the decay of American culture pit against the backdrop of a spectator sport that thrives on the spectacle of human combat.
SPECIAL EXCLUSIVE BONUS FEATURE: MAX-OUT
Long believed to be lost, Max-Out is Robert Kaylor s stunning debut film featuring a cast entirely composed of actual convicted felons. Fully improvised with no script, the film follows the plight of an African-American ex-convict whose struggle to find work after serving time only reinforces his criminal instincts and his desire for respect in a world that offers little hope.
Code Red is proud to present this extremely rare production which represents a bold example of Kaylor s talent as an artist as it redefines the documentary as a means of therapy for its participants.