In multiple shots the frame is reversed. At a party framed magazines on a shelf are reversed. During a conversation with his father, the logo on Colin's shirt switches from his left shoulder to his right shoulder (and reversed) and back to his left shoulder. See more »
I couldn't help but watch this film and think how incredibly empty it was. When if anything it should be the opposite.
The makers of American Teen place themselves in the lives of a classes senior year of school. We are to witness the usual cliques of several teens who go through the growing and learning pains of life.
In the end though, the dramatic moments and the loud soundtrack, quick editing, sound bite moments end up making the real people in this film come across as caricatures in their own movie.
The film is bombastic and in your face, when it needs to step away and tone down. When the intimate or poignant moments are described in someones life, it becomes flashy and gimmicky with distracting animations.
When it's suppose to poignant, its 2 sentences and over. You really don't get to know these kids other than what is described in the first 10 minutes of the film.
Scenes are played out of teenage life that everyone can relate to, but with the cameras around, it feels forced and coerced, regardless of whether the incidences are true to life. Someone is dumped by text message on their cellphone, so how do the film-makers capture that in real-time??? You get the sense the viewer is being cheated. A documentary is suppose to let the story unfold by itself, at it's worst American Teen actually becomes "predictable".
The idea of getting into a high school and capturing every detail of intimate moments with the kids, seems to have created a world that almost feels like its scripted when the cameras are around, and overly dramatic, when it doesn't have to be.
All the senior adults in the movie that are related to the kids (parents, teachers) even come across as nothing but pure buffoons who we don't get to know either.
It really does feel like the film-makers project some sort of ideas as to how this one town is a template for every high school in America, when it's really not that simple.
In the end though I wouldn't discourage people from seeing it, but the American teen is way more complicated than this, and the film-makers just haven't got it.
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