Teenage kids in America take high-school way too seriously. I don’t know whether the portrayal of kids in America is the same as college life is portrayed in India, but if every teenage movie I have seen is true then it’s actually a bit sad. I hope someone contradicts me but I remember 17 way differently than this. Maybe I was a loner or strange but my teenage years were way less messed up than what’s shown in this movie.
That said, this movie wasn’t that bad. I have seen so many teenage movies that I actually know the entire routine of the movie but one name brought me to watch this movie. Woody Harrelson, and I thank my luck that I did because he is the real redeeming factor of the movie. He was the personification of every single thought I was having while watching this movie.
The previous paragraph may sound like I hated this movie but it’s not like that. I laud the way Nadine’s character was built. I was actually involved most of the time and I was actually mentally coaxing Nadine whenever she did something, or in this case, anything.
As the title suggests, the story is about Nadine who lives with her mother, father and brother. She looses her father at an early age and as, for her, he was her saviour, so she feels like her life is going all downhill.
Like I was saying earlier, Nadine(Hailee Steinfeld) is kind of relatable. Her perspective of life is what, probably, everyone felt like when they were 17. But Hailee Steinfeld is too attractive and beautiful to play the awkward teen. I mean, she was playing the part really good and she owned every bit of that character but she is actually hot. If you’re judging me right now, in my defence, she’s 20. Suck it.
The dialogues are pretty conversational and simplistic and her interactions with Woody Harrelson’s character are just straight up hilarious. I mean, you know every Woody Harrelson character is going to have a sick comeback in any situation, unless he has been cast as a seriously weak character. So you know that a comeback is due after, everytime, Nadine tries to judge him or piss him off in any way. Other than these two, every other character was pretty simplistic and were clearly categorised into black and white.
I have two major gripes regarding this movie.One is, obviously, the narration. Why don’t writers just stop doing it, or at least just follow up on it. There could have been a hundred ways to justify the narration. Maybe she is writing in a blog, a diary or telling the story to someone instead of breaking the fourth wall for the sake of narration. The second major gripe is the music. I hated the music because the movie itself is great without the music. The colour, the tone, the production design, all of it had a very indie look to it but the music just screamed of an attempt to be hip and acceptable. It wasn’t required at all. I think the director(Kelly Fremon Craig) should have put her trust on Hailee’s acting skills.
Still, as it’s Kelly’s second directorial venture, I’ll say that it’s a pretty good job.
FINAL VERDICT – Yes, this is a short review because I think that much will do. This movie is a fun one-time watch so give it a go. Probably you’ll find it more relatable than I did and end up enjoying it more.
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