Seriocomic story based on the memoir by Beverly Donofrio, the movie follows a young woman who finds her life radically altered by an event from her teen years. Born in 1950, Beverly grew up bright and ambitious in a working-class neighborhood in Connecticut; her father was a tough but good-hearted cop who listened to his daughter's problems, and her mother was a nervous woman eager to imagine the worst. From an early age, Beverly displays a keen intelligence and an interest in literature, and dreams of going to college in New York and becoming a writer. However, she also develops an early interest in boys, and at 15 finds herself madly in love with a boy from her high school. However, an attempt to get his attention leads to an embarassing incident at a party, and Ray, a sweet but thick-headed 18-year-old, steps forward to defend her. Beverly and Ray end up making out, and after one thing leads to another, Beverly discovers she's pregnant. Telling Ray is only marginally less difficult... Written by
I put off watching this for a long while, until well after its release on video, because of the very mixed reviews it got and the perception that the content was drab and potentially preachy. Well I was wrong. This is an excellent movie, well worth the expenditure of two hours of anyone's time (well... unless maybe you've only got 24 hours to live, or something). Although the subject matter may sound dour, and certainly does deal with "kitchen sink" issues which can strangle the human spirit without even allowing it the luxury of looking heroic as it succumbs... still the film is about life, not about defeat, and the characters never lose an inner spark and humanity which makes us care about them, and like, or even love them by the time the movie finishes. It's funny and moving... and in a way which seems to have more to do with the way life is funny and moving than with movie conventions.
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