Almost two decades after its initial release, the unapologetic ‘Kids’ is still affecting people as read in ‘Legends Never Die’ by Caroline Rothstein. The retrospective is a well written piece on the history of the movie, its infamous cast, and the post-glow it left behind. Larry Clark’s original vision offers a gloves-off view into a group of downtown NYC skaters and their antics; starring then unknowns, Harold Hunter, Leo Fitzpatrick, Rosario Dawson, and more.

‘Legends Never Die’ can be read in its entirety here.

Kids came from the minds of Korine, a skate kid from Tennessee whose grandmother lived in Queens and hung out with Harold and his friends, and Clark, already known for his gritty, sexualized youth photography. (Clark had started photographing the crew in the early 1990s.) It was the first film for both, and the camera barely leaves the kids, none of whom were actors at the time; all were plucked from Harold’s skater crew and elsewhere downtown.

Those of us who watched Kids as adolescents, growing up in an era before iPhones, Facebook, and Tiger Moms, had our minds blown from wherever we were watching–whether it was the Angelika Film Center on the Lower East Side or our parents’ Midwestern basements. We were captivated by the entirely unsupervised teens smoking blunts, drinking forties, hooking up, running amok and reckless through the New York City streets. Simultaneously, the driving storyline highlighted the terror of HIV and AIDS, which was at its apex in the mid-nineties.