High schooler Greg, who spends most of his time making parodies of classic movies with his co-worker Earl, finds his outlook forever altered after befriending a classmate who has just been diagnosed with cancer.
Shy 14-year-old Duncan goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend's daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.
Rosie and Alex have been best friends since they were 5, so they couldn't possibly be right for one another...or could they? When it comes to love, life and making the right choices, these two are their own worst enemies.
George, a lonely and fatalistic teen who has made it all the way to his senior year without ever having done a real day of work, is befriended by Sally, a popular but complicated girl who recognizes in him a kindred spirit.
Sutter Keely lives in the now. It's a good place for him. A high school senior, charming and self-possessed, he's the life of the party, loves his job at a men's clothing store, and has no plans for the future. A budding alcoholic, he's never far from his supersized, whiskey-fortified thirst-master cup. But after being dumped by his girlfriend, Sutter gets drunk and wakes up on a lawn with Aimee Finecky hovering over him. She's different: the "nice girl" who reads science fiction and doesn't have a boyfriend. While Aimee has dreams of a future, Sutter lives in the impressive delusion of a spectacular now, yet somehow, they're drawn together. Written by
I wanted to see this film to soothe my wife. She usually loves adolescent romance stuff, so I thought I would suffer through it. Instead, I ended up liking it more than she did.
The thing about romance films and adolescence films in particular is that the kids are presented like complete idiots, like aliens from the planet Dumb. In order to keep up with this superficial image all other characters must act the same. The result is a complete fake.
The Spectacular Now is nothing like that. From the start it portrays teens as complex, intelligent, troubled about their past and their future, maybe laid back alcoholics or chronically shy or overachievers with low self esteem. And they all interact like human beings. It's a joy to see a film like this.
I also loved that they didn't use the cheap tricks of romance movies in general. No evil adversary to define the character as good, no ultimate goal to direct the entire film from point A to point B, no artificial accidents or catastrophes to move people out of their stupor, no highschool cliques, no Facebook or Twitter dramas. Instead, normal people doing normal stuff, trying to get over themselves and have a happy life.
The film was not without its flaws. It was a little too slow, for once. It only lasted an hour and a half but it felt like more. Also there is a somewhat seamless jump of a few years that takes the viewer by surprise (I still don't know when it happened). Also, I am a bit grumpy today, the film probably deserved a 9. Go watch it!
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