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ROLL BOUNCE

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Having seen Roller Boogie, Skatetown USA and Xanadu a quarter-century ago, I'm well prepared to assess this latest film in the roller-disco canon. Sure it's 25 later, and stars kids who barely remember the early '90s, but Malcolm Lee's film, set in that heady 1979 Spandex season, purports to throw us all back to a simpler time when life was a breeze on eight polyurethane wheels. Led by Bow Wow, a suburban Chicago crew of street- rollin' teens enters the big skate-off against the semi-pros from the other side of town. Roll is a mostly sweet, occasionally funny bit of fluff that runs 30 minutes too long (a melodramatic death subplot could go), and also fails to deliver a big satisfying pow in its final scenes (frankly, the other team skates better). It's fun and harmless, and although it's youth-oriented, I suspect the film will roll best with nostalgic adults over 40 who aren't ashamed to boogie-oogie-oogie. (AH)

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