An adaption of the Judy Blume book of the same name which tells the story of a young girl, played by Abby Ryder Fortson, coming of age and finding her place in the world.
I will preface this review by saying that I haven’t read the book this film was based on and am not very familiar with the works of Judy Blume.
I was excited to watch this film as the trailer gave off a very quirky sensibility, it reminded me of the works of Greta Gerwig and Wes Anderson. However, upon watching it I found it to be a much more straight forward coming of age tale then I was expecting. That is not necessarily a complaint as it was still enjoyable, and strong performances from most of the adult cast, especially Rachel McAdams, did a lot to elevate it.
I also thought the film’s focus on religion was interesting and nicely separated it out from a lot of other coming of age films that are obsessed with budding romances, dances and raging hormones. I liked that the film didn’t shy away from showing how much of a destructive force religion can be in some cases and that it tried to have more of a serious conversation on the topic. Sadly though, I will say that the conversation this film wants to have would have been made much better if it had gone just a little further, as what it is saying now is fairly surface level.
Overall, an interesting coming of age film that is boosted by its performances and decision to focus on religion over teenage angst.
The focus on religion
McAdams, Bates and Safdie
It is fun
It is a little surface level at times and an exploration of greater depth could have really been interesting
It has pacing issues in the form of second act lulls
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