Anchorage Image


By Matthew Roe | April 21, 2022

Ever since Jack Kerouac published On the Road in 1957, the United States has become increasingly obsessed with the road story. These narratives are normally hallmarked by youths searching for their own ever-elusive American Dream, with stark realities eventually colliding against youthful aspirations. This formula continues to work because the conflict between cultural expectations, personal ambition, and a constant desire for something better is still a massive undercurrent of American culture (though the subgenre has adopted different meanings and tropes in other countries).

However, for those of us in the Burnout Generation, this journey has largely taken a darker, more twisted tone than those of previous decades. This is exactly what we get within the shuddering strut mounts and drug-laced fever dreams of director/star Scott Monahan and writer/star Dakota Loesch’s feature-length drama, Anchorage.

“…brothers attempting to smuggle a trunk full of opioid-stuffed teddy bears from Florida to Alaska.”

The film centers on Jacob (Monahan) and John (Loesch), a pair of brothers attempting to smuggle a trunk full of opioid-stuffed teddy bears from Florida to Alaska. We start our ride along as they hit the deserts and rolling hills of Southern California, sleeping in abandoned buildings while channeling their inner Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo through a cornucopia of drugs and booze. However, while things initially appear to be all merry and mayhem, a momentary choice by one of the brothers not only derails their trip but threatens the fragile balance between them and their fleeting dream of success.

Anchorage mostly meanders between mundane mausoleums of dead company towns, yet it doesn’t feel as if it is dragging its feet. This is mainly achieved through the stellar chemistry between Monahan and Loesch, though separately, the actors have noticeably weak moments. While Monahan has conviction, his delivery can come across as too hokey and mannered at times when the movie really cannot afford a tonal disconnect.

Anchorage (20227)

Directed: Scott Monahan

Written: Dakota Loesch

Starring: Scott Monahan, Dakota Loesch, Christopher Corey Smith, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Anchorage Image

"…effectively captures the underbelly of a generation."

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  1. Marie Claire says:

    Ever since I was small, I am fun watching different kinds of movies, but anchorage film stays in my mind because of the realistic and beautifully delivered story. What you mention about the brother attempting to smuggle the teddy bear stuffed with an opioid in the truck from Florida to Alaska is dangerous. I am fascinated by how the director makes the scene portray the situation well. I think that C.W. Winter & Anders Edström had made it beautifully that until now, the movie is still in my mind. If I ever had a director for a film I would be making, I would be glad to have their service because of the kind of story they made in the anchorage.

    • Scott Monahan says:

      Thank you for taking the time to watch Anchorage and your kind words! It has truly been one of the highlights of my life to be able to travel around the world sharing this film with audiences, especially getting the opportunity to present the film live with a Q&A and meet them and hear their own stories! Thanks again for watching and stay tuned for our release so you can share your experience with your friends and family!

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