29 user 25 critic

Whatever (1998)

R | | Drama | 10 July 1998 (USA)
A teen faces her impending adulthood in the carefree sex and drug revolution years of the early 80's prior to fears of AIDS. She lives with her bitter, divorced mother and her sadistic kid ... See full summary »




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Anna Stockard
Brenda Talbot
Mr. Chaminski
Carol Stockard
Marc Riffon ...
Dan Montano ...
John Woods (as John G. Connolly)
Tony Torn ...
Mr. Stanley
Trey Compton ...
Joe Mantragna ...
Matt Rumbaugh ...
Jim Neville ...
Garret Spencer ...
Destiny Matranga ...


A teen faces her impending adulthood in the carefree sex and drug revolution years of the early 80's prior to fears of AIDS. She lives with her bitter, divorced mother and her sadistic kid brother. Looking forward to a life based on her passion for art, she nevertheless gets in with the partying crowd which causes her to miss deadlines and poor grades which jeapordizes her future. Ultimately she ends up losing her virginity to an older artist wanna-be who she has had a long standing crush on. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


1981. In an era of just say no, they said yes.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive teen drug and alcohol use, language including sexual dialogue, sexuality and some violence | See all certifications »


Official Sites:





Release Date:

10 July 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bánomisén  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$46,347 (USA) (10 July 1998)


$307,037 (USA) (16 October 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



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Did You Know?


Sam can be seen in at least two scenes wearing Batman: The Animated Series pajamas. BTAS debuted in 1992. Whatever takes place in 1981. See more »

Crazy Credits

New Jersey [played by] West Virginia See more »


References Batman: The Animated Series (1992) See more »


I Should've Known
Written and Performed by Aimee Mann
Courtesy of DGC Records
By Arrangement with Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

Drugs, sex, lawlessness, life
1 June 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Whatever is a great slice-of-life coming of age story, this time about two young girls in their last year of high school. One girl is awkward looking and shy, but talented with a bright future as an artist. The other is prettier and popular, but not really destined for much. Both live their formative years in a backwater New Jersey suburb and their lives are far less polished and sanitized than those portrayed in most teenage coming of age films these days (TEN THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU, SHE'S ALL THAT, etc...) This film is gritty and real and the characters are powerful. It's hailed as a great 'chick flick" because it's focus is these two girls, but it's more than that.

I thought they did a great job portraying a realistic world. Hell, the high school party scene was stolen right out of my life! ;)

In any case, the acting is superb. The two girls, Anna and Brenda are played by Liza Weil (Stir of Echoes, A Cur for Serpents) and Chad Morgan (Co-Ed Call Girl). They find themselves looking for their own identity in the midst of messed-up family lives and peer pressure. Anna's the daughter of a single mother who works as a waitress and has affairs with rich married men to help support her kids. Brenda suffers through years of sexual abuse at the hands of her step-father. Both find escape and comfort in their pursuit for adulthood -- hopping from one new experience to the next in search of themselves. Drugs, sex, lawlessness... all of these things become part of their lives, and things which they must overcome in order to survive.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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