When fate brings together two high school seniors from opposite sides of the tracks, it's something crazy/beautiful. Nicole (Kirsten Dunst) is the 17-year-old troubled daughter of a wealthy congressman who never met a rule she didn't break. Carlos (Jay Hernandez) is a grade A student with big dreams who endures a two-hour bus ride every morning to attend high school in an upscale L.A. neighborhood. Their innocent flirtations quickly develop into passionate love, but Nicole's self-destructive behavior threatens their relationship and puts Carlos' promising future in jeopardy. Will their intense passion keep them together despite the objections of their families or will Carlos be forced to plan his future without Nicole?Written by
Gavin Nelson Magnum
It's not often that we see a REAL teen movie nowadays. I live in Jersey City, so I personally can't relate to these teen flicks involving blonde airheads and guys who look like they just jumped off the pages of "Tiger Beat."
In "Crazy/Beautiful" one of the main characters is a Hispanic--played beautifully by Jay Hernandez who I hope to see in more and more movies--which I CAN relate to. Most of the friends I know are of Hispanic origin, and it's very rare that you see a Hispanic as a lead in a film like this. And Jay's Hispanic character wasn't used merely as a tool in creating melodrama in a preachy "West Side Story" manner.
Kirsten Dunst pretty much gives the best performance of her career. I like how they didn't put much makeup on her face, giving her a much more real look. I think Kirsten is one of the most beautiful young actresses in the biz, so I think she's beautiful no matter how little makeup she wears. So I'm not going to say it was a plus that they made her look "ugly." She didn't look ugly, but at the same time she looked like a real teenage girl and it added to her character.
Bruce Davison has a great supporting role as Kirsten's father. Of course, in all teen movies, they feel it's needed to add a top-class, veteran actor to the cast to give it a touch of class. Well, that's one cliche of teen movies that I don't mind and Bruce was great, proving himself as one of our great, underrated actors.
I like how Jay's character is never really discriminated against by Kirsten's white-collar Dad--who's a Congressman. None of this "You're dating a man of another race???" or "You're dating a man of low-class" crap. The film skips through all that, being that Jay is a well-to-do individual who has his head up high and wants to become a pilot. The Dad has nothing against that, in fact he wants to help him out, setting him up with an interview and everything. But he doesn't want him to see his daughter, because of the way she is. I don't want to give anything away, so I won't reveal what exactly her problem is. So I thought that was a good way of flipping this sub-genre on its head. Usually it's the father who doesn't want the daughter to date the guy, because he doesn't like who she's dating. In this case, he didn't want the two of them to go together, because he's concerned about the boyfriend.
I only have a few problems with this film. First off, you never really get the feeling that Kirsten has a severe problem between the beginning and end. So it feels like her disorder was used strictly as a dramatic tool. Through most of the film, she's amazingly jovial. We see her drinking once in a while, but let's face it--what teen doesn't? And I thought--especially for a PG-13 film--they went overboard with the sex scenes. I'm not saying that they were explicit, but there was a good deal of them. I was thinking, as watching certain portions of the film, what my Dad said: "The love in most romantic movies nowadays seems to be based more on sex than love." Don't get me wrong, we do get a feel of the love--not lust--between Jay and Kirsten, but they could've trimmed the sex just a bit. It just came off in the wrong way.
For those looking for an escape from most of the lame teen flicks that have been fed to us in previous years, I recommend you check this one out. It's a shame that this movie didn't reach a big audience in theaters. I really hope more people will go out and rent this film, because it's very good.
My score: 7 (out of 10)
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this