Ricky's Film Reviews

Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases

The Edge of Seventeen

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High-school life gets even more unbearable for Nadine when her best friend, Krista, starts dating her older brother.

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Cast

Hailee Steinfeld – Nadine Franklin

Blake Jenner – Darian

Haley Lu Richardson – Krista

Woody Harrelson – Mr. Bruner

Kyra Sedgwick – Mrs. Franklin

Hayden Szeto – Erwin Kim

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The Good:

Steinfeld captures the essence of an extremely hormonal teenager brilliantly. Whirlwinding her way through The Edge of Seventeen, the girl displays such irritating rage that even I wanted to give her a hard smack in the face. And in fact, her performance was so full-on and bursting with irritating anger that I felt genuinely convinced by story of the character I was watching.
Steinfeld is a human tornado as she tantrums and screams her way through the script. I cannot fault her performance at all. Great work. But I swear to god, if the girl is like that in real life there’s no one I’d want to meet less.

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The Edge of Seventeen not only touches on but explores classic issues most young adults endure between say, 13 and 18.

Love: the most common one. But it’s not just Nadine falling for a chap with her heart fluttering, and waiting excitedly by the telephone.. oh no. This movie exposes it all; firstly Nadine’s brother (an extremely fuckable Blake Jenner) is caught in bed with her best friend. And unfortunately (fortunately for fans of a half-naked Jenner) she walks in the room as her best friend is jerking him off. Rather graphic I thought, but quite funny at the same time.

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Reckless behaviour: then you have Erwin (Szeto) who sweetly falls for Nadine and invites her to his house one night. Cue reckless, insecure behaviour as she leads the poor chap on by requesting he fuck her there and then – in his swimming pool..

..which turns out to be a joke, as she bursts into fits of giggles and he is majorly confused about what is happening. A positively eye-rolling scene, where I started to detest this obnoxious bitch for even being alive let alone a teenager.

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Maturity: or rather – IMMaturity is displayed pretty much from the movie’s opening – through to closing. Examples include Nadine having to follow her mother (Sedgwick) to work because she doesn’t want to go to school. And when in her mother’s office, decides to erupt in argument about her current angst.
The most shocking part of this is when the young girl puts two fingers (vertically) in her mouth, another two to her temple and animates blowing her brains out.

I blinked.
This had to be going the extra hormonal mile, it was just sick. But at the same time I wasn’t surprised, given the type of character I was watching on screen.

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Popularity: Nadine’s awkward personality ensures an even more awkward atmosphere when she comes into contact with others. The girl is relationship dynamite when even her best friend ditches her during the middle of the movie.
I admired the director’s style here; the portrayal of a young adult with potential, and deep down an urge to be kind – but just can’t and ends up tying herself in knots which becomes visible to others. Nadine’s insecurity and wanting to fit in with her peers reminded me so much of a young me – when I was fifteen / sixteen. Christ, I remember being very insecure in college and wanting to be liked. Wanting to be invited to parties, etc. And that classic awkwardness of when actually being invited to a party, standing around feeling weird and unsure how to be around particular (the populars) people.
Nowadays, I just don’t give a shit.

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THE EDGE OF SEVENTEEN

The cast of this movie are a refreshing mix, and keep it flowing nicely with a range of different personalities. Sedgwick nails the struggling mother at the end of her tether with both life, and her daughter. Harrelson tones down for his role as high school teacher but at the same time creates a great air of light comedy to smoothe out Steinfeld’s aggression. When the pair are together the dramatics certainly flow, and the dialogue between them when in the clasroom is often quite funny. Top marks here.

EDGE OF SEVENTEEN

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The Bad:

Although Steinfeld is good at improvisational comedy, the woman fails to seal the deal with being full-on funny. Yes, she delivers some witty moments but she also hits a barrier which seems to prevent her going the whole hog with comedic timing. She’s not funny enough and this makes any dry humour come across as moody and irritable instead.

I remember sitting in the cinema thinking, “she’s asked her best friend to choose between her (friendship) and her brother (lover) – WHO THE FUCK WOULD DO THAT?”
Some of the story is so unbelievable that the movie becomes a load of unecessarily aggressive, cringeworthy shit. To say a good percentage of this movie is tedious would be the understatement of 2016. As I sat watching it, I became increasingly hateful towards its protagonist. Her stroppy attitude and outbursts irritated me highly (but maybe that meant Steinfeld was actually acting).

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The Edge of Seventeen is a headache to watch.
But it’s half and half; the portrayal of just how fucked up kids can be nowadays during their most hormonal stages is superb and describes it spot-on. I could even relate to some of the story from my own past as I watched.

And then the shouty, detestable lead character with her unbearable display – I just couldn’t stand her.
I can only describe this movie as being like suffering a hangover, the painful experience of having to endure a situation you put yourself in (by watching it).

This movie is definitely something I wouldn’t put myself through again. Jesus, it was as insufferable as Nadine herself.

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This entry was posted on January 7, 2017 by .
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