Lymelife - Derick Martini profile

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  • 24 June 2010
Lymelife - Derick Martini profile

Derick Martini

2 December 1975

Born in New York City, he spent most of his childhood on Long Island until he was accepted into NYU as a film student. He dropped out after a month. He immediately wrote a play about unrequited love that was performed off Broadway. After writing another play he found gainful employment as a screenwriter.

What’s she up to now?
Martini has finally got to make a script that he wrote aged 23 called Lymelife. Produced by Martin Scorsese, it’s tagline ‘The American Dream Sucks’ pretty much says everything about the lives of a community living in the suburbs of New York in 1979. He’s currently working on Hick, a film set in the American Midwest, which he calls another slice of American life.

On working with Scorsese
‘I think that the most important thing about Scorsese for me personally is watching his work from earliest stuff all the way to today: he sets the bar for all filmmakers I believe and when you look at his films he delivers on every level, performance, editing, dialogue, music, every way you can deliver on a film and so when you watch his films I aspire to deliver the way he does and that is the best thing that you can learn from him.’

On the importance of deer
‘Deer are the connection to Lyme disease as one needs a deer tick to get Lyme disease and to me Lyme disease is a corrosive disease if gone untreated and relationships are like that too if they have rifts in them. It’s also the idea of a deer representing innocence and represents children in the movie. The deer galloping in woods connected lots of narrative and thematic dots in subtle way which some get and others don’t, but that doesn’t matter as it helped me tell the story and form a narrative.’

Interesting fact
Tim Hutton’s character who contracts Lyme disease and hides out in his basement pretending to go to work is based on someone that Martini knew as he was growing up.

Lymelife, selected release from Fri 2 Jul.


  • 2008
  • US
  • 1h 34min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Derick Martini
  • Written by: Derick Martini, Steven Martini
  • Cast: Rory Culkin, Alec Baldwin, Emma Roberts, Jill Hennessy, Kieran Culkin, Timothy Hutton, Cynthia Nixon

Martini has used Robert Redford's 1980 familial tragedy drama 'Ordinary People' as his template in this tale set on the outskirts of New York in 1979, taking the deep-seated malaise that runs through American suburban life as his subject. Whilst of interest, this suffers from an inability to escape the clichés of the genre.

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