I haven’t been a teenager for almost two-and-a-half years now, and I’ve almost forgotten what it’s like. I remember the pain; I remember the heartbreak. But those are mostly memories now, more thoughts than actual feelings. I can’t conjure the pain at will, and if I can, it’s dulled a bit.
Then I see movies like The Edge of Seventeen, and the wounds are torn open once more. Goodness, they hurt so badly.
If you haven’t heard of it—I literally just saw a commercial for it on TV—The Edge of Seventeen is about Nadine (Hailee Steinfeld, Pitch Perfect 2). Her father passes away when she’s 13, leaving her with her mother, twin brother, and best friend, Krista. Then, when she’s 17, after she’s gotten really drunk and passed out upstairs, her brother and Krista sort of… well, they sort of hook up.
That never happened to me, thankfully, but I feel it just the same. Nadine is so lost, and so hurt, and she tries to find hope wherever she can. She finds a bad boy she likes, and a good boy she might, and a teacher that really just wants to help. I think what makes teen films so popular is that we all go through these things, and yet we all feel like we’re the only ones. That being said, few of those films are as effective to the contrary as this one. Off the top of my head, the peers of this effort are either Perks of Being a Wallflower or made by John Hughes, all of which I’ll be watching again soon.
This film is so real, so painfully authentic. As I was the only person in my screening, the impact might not be made until it’s “on Netflix,” but I know this is going to be a film that sticks with a lot of people—young, old, and in-between. In fact, one day, I might not remember my actual youth, in which case I’ll be glad this film and others are around to take its place.
The Edge of Seventeen is in theaters now. It’s rated R, though, so don’t go alone if you’re on the other side of seventeen. I JUST GOT THE TITLE. Wow, me.
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