Emily Lindstrom, 14, is an aspiring concert violinist; she's spending the summer practicing for a big audition while her girlfriends are at camp. She's also got a thriving neighborhood ...
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Emily Lindstrom, 14, is an aspiring concert violinist; she's spending the summer practicing for a big audition while her girlfriends are at camp. She's also got a thriving neighborhood business: for 50 cents, she'll keep your secret. Her mother is very pregnant, and her parents seem more concerned about the new baby than anything Emily cares about. A new family moves in next door; their son, Philip, 12, becomes Emily's friend. Eventually, the weight of Emily's secrets - her own, the ones she's keeping professionally, and a secret Philip tells her, send her life temporarily crashing down. Written by
Jon Reeves <firstname.lastname@example.org>
OK, I admit it - I liked Little Secrets. Didn't LOVE it, but I liked it. Which will place me squarely in the critical minority, I'm sure. But, here's the thing. I'm first, and foremost, a family woman. And, from a parental perspective, I can tell you that films I can feel comfortable sitting down and watching with my younger cousins are few and far between. Little Secrets is one of those films, a non-threatening, light-hearted piece of fluff that leaves you feeling .pretty good. A girl puts her ability to keep a confidence to work, though she soon learns it's a tougher job than she imagined in this comedy drama for young people.
A girl puts her ability to keep a confidence to work, though she soon learns it's a tougher job than she imagined in this comedy drama for young people. Emily (Evan Rachel Wood) is a 14-year-old girl who loves music and is studying the violin. She has a real gift as a violinist, and has passed up the opportunity to go to summer camp with her friends to study with her tutor, Pauline (Vivica A. Fox), who believes Emily has a chance of landing a spot in the community symphony orchestra. Emily also has an unusual business on the side -- for 50 cents, she'll hear and keep other kids' secrets, and offer advice on how to keep incriminating facts away from parents, teachers, or other authority figures. However, she also has a secret of her own -- a new family has moved into the neighborhood, and while Philip (Michael Angarano), a year or two younger than Emily, quickly takes a liking to her, she immediately develops a crush on his older brother, David (David Gallagher). However, David has a habit of getting into trouble, and soon Emily is keeping some secrets she's prefer to get off her chest.
If all of this sounds very formulaic it is. There is little in the way of surprises here - much of the plot is recycled from any one of a dozen other family films. But it is loaded with nice little comedic moments. Under the comedic surface lie themes of family unity, cooperation, priorities, and unconditional love.
As for the performances, they're okay. Our star Wood (Thirteen, Simone) doesn't have to stretch too far playing the teenage violinist and Gallagher (TV's Seventh Heaven) gets plenty of face time as Emily's friend. Vivica A. Fox plays Emily's violin teacher. With an ensemble cast this large, it is difficult for anyone in the cast to stand out performance wise, but each gets a moment during the film to reveal a bit of his or her personality.
Overall, Little Secrets is innocent and inoffensive family fare that the kids will probably love and parents will find rather enjoyable.7/10.
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