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GROOVE

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STARRING LOLA GLAUDINI, HAMISH LINKLATER, DENNY KIRKWOOD, RACHEL TRUE, VINCENT RIVERSIDE, STEVE VAN WORMER, DJ JOHN DIGWEED DIRECTED BY GREG HARRISON

BUZZ-O-METER 4

WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL? The first flick to plug into San Francisco’s dot-com youthquake.

One glorious night. An ensemble cast of sexy unknowns. Music, youth, romance. If it sounds like American Graffiti, it’s supposed to. A Sundance smash gobbled up by Sony Pictures Classics for $1.5 million, Groove is a cybernetic, techno-fueled update of that pop-zeitgeist classic. Which doesn’t mean Groove — which follows a bunch of characters as they collide at a San Francisco rave — was a party to put together. Working with a slim six-figure budget, Harrison had to cope with thieves who sabotaged the set, an earthquake, and Hollywood suits who wanted to fiddle with his light, joyous script. ”They all asked ‘Can we add a gun?’ and ‘Can someone die?’ We said, ‘No. No one can die.’ That was not the film we were making.” Harrison kept his script — and his independence — intact by funding and filming Groove far from the studios: True to San Francisco’s freewheeling spirit, he and producer Danielle Renfrew raised cash from the city’s newly minted dot-com millionaires. (June 9)