Jess + Moss, the directorial feature debut of Clay Jeter, centers on the tight-knit relationship between two second cousins, forged over a shared feeling of isolation and fear of growing up. At 18 and 12 respectively, Jess (Sarah Hagan) and Moss (Austin Vickers) are on opposite ends of adolescence, and this drama explores that divide through revealing vignettes of a pivotal summer spent together. Jeter, not only co-wrote and directed this coming of age tale, but also served as its cinematographer. Shot on location amidst Kentucky's vibrant tobacco fields and with various and sometimes degraded film stocks, Jess + Moss paints a romantic and visually lush depiction of the bittersweet beauty of youth.

Following a globetrotting festival tour that included exhibitions at Sundance and the Berlin International Film Festival, Jess + Moss is now open in limited release. You can get a peak at this acclaimed experimental effort thanks to its first trailer, courtesy of Yahoo:



Jess + Moss marks the feature debut of 12-year-old Austin Vickers, who was first cast in Jeter's comedy short Five Dollars. The young boy's confidence and charm easily convinced Jeter that he'd be a good onscreen match to veteran child actor Sarah Hagan. Best-known for her recurring roles on the popular teen-centered shows Freaks and Geeks and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Hagan's been acting since age six. Together the pair shares a chemistry that has been one of this drama's most noted attributes.

The most striking element of this trailer is of course its cinematography. The grainy footage, warm hues and play of light creates a nostalgic yet timeless appeal. Yet there's something more strange and wonderful just below the surface. Much of the footage we're shown obscures the faces of its leads, favoring shots from behind, or faces out of focus, or angles that keep us at a distance. It's a lyrical approach that emphasizes emotion over plot, and is sure to attract art house cinephiles.

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