The hero of this story is Marissa, a 15-year-old girl with disadvantages that many girls of her age have to face overweight and parents with a less than loving relationship with each other and with herself. Kea Könneker portrays Marissa rather convincingly as a teenager who is neither bright nor dull witted, and neither happy nor depressed. She is a very ordinary girl.
On a school trip, she meets Daniel, played by René Michaelsen, who takes her seriously enough that they spend a night together. Daniel's character leaves one almost wishing for more, but he is rather obviously not part of the main plot.
Back at school, Fiona joins the class, making a big impact with her appearance and her abundance of self-confidence. Given the choice by the teacher, she decides to sit with Marissa rather than one of those fashion conscious pupils that one finds in every class in this age-group. This then turns out to be the start of a friendship of dissimilar personalities.
Andrea Dewell, as Fiona, puts in a performance reminiscent of Keira Knightley's in 'Bend it Like Beckham'. She really holds one's attention, whatever her mood, and helps allow the leading actress to show other sides of her personality than are possible when she is at home with her other fellow pupils.
As in 'Bend it Like Beckham', not all the parents appear sufficiently realistic. In this case, Georg Krause, played by Burghart Klaussner, makes a promising start, but overreacts in some difficult scenes later on.
Most of the other characters, for instance fellow pupils, a homosexual couple and various other couples, are overdone, perhaps to remind the viewer that it is a comedy and not a real true story.
From an artistic point of view, the swimming pool scenes are outstanding, and there are other good ideas too. The video camera scenes are, however rather irritating, and not such a clever method of telling the viewer some background information about the two young ladies.
The main weakness of the comedy is, however, that, having brought up some very tricky situations and questions for people of that age-group, instead of using the darker sides of the situations as a foil to the humorous scenes, the film treats them light-heartedly. This is a great pity, because it is at times on the verge of being a good film. In this vein, the ending is an atrocious let-down.
It is a fairly entertaining film, and worth seeing.
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