ABC's early live-action Afterschool Specials- of which this is one- were slow-paced tone poems... much more subtle and not nearly as heavy-handed as the series' films would become.
Sara is a negative girl with an absentee father, a brain-damaged younger brother, and an Aunt with enough testosterone to brew beer. This is her "awkward" summer... she's worried about her looks and popularity and generally judgmental toward everyone she meets. When her swan-obsessed younger brother wanders off one day to feed the birds, Sara has to face up to her mistakes and learns a valuable lesson with the help of Jan and Peter from The Brady Bunch. (No joke)
I guess the moral of the story is not to judge people too quickly (boring) and how your life really can change in the course of one day (true), but the dull, plodding tempo of the film makes it difficult to endure. Although the Afterschool Specials were made to encourage children to lead positive, moral lives, I can't help thinking that this movie would have been considerably richer had I gotten burnt beforehand.
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