penelope buitenhuis - writer / director
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A 92 minute black and white 16mm film
in English and German
Directed by Penelope Buitenhuis

A music mockumentary with radical politics about people taking control of their lives rather than becoming victims to the winds of change.

Jonnie is a half-black tomboy singer from Canada who has spent her life avoiding trouble. In Berlin she is trying to start up a new band but the new capital is suffering increasing racial tension and growing pains since the fall of the wall. Rising prices, housing shortages, and cut-throat speculation threatens the existence of Rock house where Jonnie and other local bands rehearse and record. The loss of a community could be the outcome.

"One of the very few films to ever credibly capture the internal dynamics of a rock group. The film sparkles with raw energy, street-wise sass, aided by urgent reggae and rap-tingled rock of Jonnie's band Jellobelly."

-In Press Magazine, Australia

Jonnie meets Erik, a sexy, street-wise Mr. Fix-It who is secretive about his subversive political activities. Although her lack of trust and fear of intimacy make it hard to commit, she nonetheless becomes involved.

As life gets complicated, Jonnie must decide whether to run from her troubles or confront them. In the battle to save Rock House, Jonnie attracts media attention which also provides an unexpected opportunity for Erik's group to realize their political goals.

"Vancouver director Penelope Buitenhuis is concerned with the interface of popular culture, political consciousness and human experience within the frame of the urban landscape."

-Independent Eye, Toronto

As expressed in her rapabilly song, Jonnie's decision to "stop reacting and start to act" serves as a catalyst to those around her.

Trouble was produced by ZDF television in Germany and broadcast throughout Europe to critcla acclaim. It has also been screeened at festivals in Asia, Australia and North and South America.

Best film, Montreal Woman's Film Festival, 1994
Best Film, Magdeburg Film Festival, Germany, 1994

The trailer can be viewed here.

Trouble is available at:
Revue Video
207 Danforth Avenue, Toronto ON

1855 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver, B.C. (604) 734-0411.

Penelope can be reached in Canada through her agent
Carl Liberman (Toronto)
Tel: 416-964-8522 fax: 416-964-8206

Copyright 2011 Penelope Buitenhuis
Webmaster: Sparkjoy Studios