Saturday, January 7, 2017

Movie Review: The Edge of Seventeen

Back in the 80s, they made some of the best teem movies ever made. "The Breakfast Club", "Pretty in Pink", "Some Kind of Wonderful", "Ferris Beuller's Day Off" just to name a few. Films which spoke to the masses about what it is to be a teenager and the general pains of growing up.

Since then, with only a few notable exceptions, there hasn't been any truly relatable movies about the joys and dramas about being a teen.

"The Edge of Seventeen" stands out as an exceptional movie in many ways. A great cast, a modern setting, an unlikeably likable protagonist and the perfect mix of humour and angst and situation brings about a film that comes to rival the John Hughes films of the eighties. It's also got a killer soundtrack, taking from recent music back to the 80s.

Hailee Steinfeld plays Nadine. A sixteen-year-old girl dealing with being the multiple joys of a disfuctional family, a popular brother and complete weirdo status. This is possibly why I related to this, as in many ways, it mirrored my own high school days. Nadine is an outcast to all in her life, with the exception of her only friend, Krista. When Krista hooks up with her brother, Nadine starts the slow and steady spiral into complete alienation.

There are many elements of this film that set it apart from your normal teenage fare. A fantastic script, realistic family settings and a soundtrack is up there with 'The Breakfast Club".

Hailee Steinfeld carries this movie as the moody and apparently dreadful Nadine. She brings a "girl-next-door" feeling without making her trite or smaltzy. She butts heads with her brother, played by Glee alumni, Blake Jenner, her unstable mother (an underappreciated Kyra Sedgewick) and feels at one with her grumpy teacher, played by an equally lugubrious Woody Harrelson.

Hailee Steinfeld is going to go places. She brings an outward strength and inner vulnerability to this role which could have so easily slipped into triteness or just being plain annoying.

This film also brought back every teenage bit of angst I'd ever felt. This movie did it's job.

With a soundtrack that features Birdy, The Pixies, Spandau Ballet and Aimee Mann, it's an album I'd happily hunt out.

The other great thing about this movie is it takes away a few of the stereotypes, and makes fun of quite a few stereotypes often found in these kinds of films. The love interest, in particular, is a breath of fresh air.

The Edge of Seventeen has all the stamps of a classic film. Funny, edgy and on the money. If, like me, you're avoid the hot weather and making frequent trips to the cinema, I highly recommend this film. It gets pretty much everything right.

My only question - what is it with these teenagers and their eyebrows? Is plucking now illegal?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh sounds like a good one to squeeze in the next 33 hours before my summer hols finish!