This September, a new comedy, drama film arrives in select theaters, with its eye on a sub-culture inside the large melting pot that’s Southern California.
10E is a truly unique film and the first of its kind to shine a light on the Armenian-American teen experience. Actor-director, Vahik Pirhamzei has playfully brought to the table a discussion that has been missing from the Gen Z of young Armenians who have integrated into the fabric of the American society yet not fully abandoned or dismissed the beauty and richness of the Armenian culture.
In 10E, Robert (Pirhamzei), a single father, living in Glendale, California (the heart of Armenians in the U.S.) strives to be the cool dad, and a beacon of decency for his independently minded, daughter, Tennie (played by newcomer Poema Oleas Mekhitrian), while juggling an advertising business and a few inner demons of his own. With his sense of humor intact, Robert coasts through whatever life throws at him while keeping a watchful eye on his teenage daughter, at a level the modern, western world might call “helicopter parenting.” Tennie who is struggling with the pressures of today’s teenage-life and campus-gossip is going her own way when it comes to overcoming issues and surviving what most teenagers experience but do not readily discuss with their parents.
10E is a truly unique film and the first of its kind to shine a light on the Armenian-American teen experience.
It’s Robert’s efforts that seem to push his daughter away as he, against the advice of a psychologist, tries to become the fun, best friend, instead of sticking to the methods of more traditional parenting.
Director, Vahik Pirhamzei has approached the topic and the casting of his film, 10E with care and attention.
I was privileged to attend one of the very first screenings of this film and to realize the place this film is carving for itself, culturally and cinematically. Director Pirhamzei has approached the topic and the casting of fresh and at times first-time actors with care and attention. As a result, all the newcomers shine and as a filmmaker, Pirhamzei has created moments that allow each one of them to have their moment.
Additionally, the city of Glendale, California serves as the location of the film’s story and viewers get to see the real city where a large number of Armenians live.
10E (a twist on the name of the film’s title character, Tennie) approaches weighty, subjects using comedy, a smart approach when it comes to topics it is trying to discuss. The film is a window to the fast-paced, hilarious, and at times, chaotic Armenian life in America.
In the tradition of movies like BLOCKERS, CRAZY RICH ASIANS, and I, TONYA, comes 10E, with an indie-film charm, comedy and a specific view at a specific line of teenagers in America.
Produced by Richmond Media Entertainment, 10E arrives in select, Los Angeles theaters on September 27, 2019.
Watch the official trailer for 10E, featuring Poema Oleas Mekhitrian, Angelo Diona, and Vahik Pirhamzei.