Wendy and her friends avoid the heartless world of random hookups and friends-with-benefits by spending all their time together. When she meets Sean, Wendy is torn between her genuine affection and desire for him and her commitment to her friends, especially her best friend Billie: and Billie isn't interested in losing her friends.
In a suburb populated by wealthy and liberal parents who want a bucolic life for themselves and their children, Wendy, Billie and Ann are seniors at the alternative private school; they spend all their time with fellow students Jonah, Price and Robert. The six have been friends since elementary school and their friendship has become a six-person monogamous relationship. They swap sex partners each week; their loyalty is to the group, not to one person. The six friends don't want to survive high school - they want to transcend its pettiness. Their friendships are intense, especially between Billie and Wendy. After orientation, Wendy meets Sean, a new senior who moved from Chicago; he finds out about her "inner geek" and she quickly recognizes a kindred spirit. Soon their friendship becomes romantic and Wendy is torn between her genuine affection and desire for Sean, and her commitment and belief in the group. Wendy starts to test the boundaries of her vow to her friends, and Billie ...
Stephen Colletti and Hilary Burton previously worked together on One Tree Hill. (JKV) See more »
What? You don't live in what world? The world of first dates? Of holding hands?
No you jackass. Of disposable girlfriends. Of bracelets for blowjobs. Of macking and making out and going down and text messaging some asshole whose gonna come all over my shirt. That world.
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My wife and I chose to see Normal Adolescent Behavior at the Tribeca Film Festival because it sounded right up our alley. With our extended family including over 15 high school and college aged kids, we hate the the way that Hollywood portrays teens and were eager to see a film that was closer to the truth. I always root for the small filmmaker, as they always seem to make films that are more honest and real than Hollywood.
What we saw was a film that managed to take teen sex and make it dull. And fake. In fact, it takes teen group sex and makes it dull. How? Unfortunaltely in order to explain that I would have to insult the writer/director and I do not believe in anonymously insulting people on the internet. She seemed rather proud of herself at the Q&A after the film, so at least someone is happy with this movie. (My wife pointed out that none of the questions lead with the usual, "First of all, thank you for your great work.." intro that all Q&A questioners start with. I missed that detail.)
Suffice to say that the characters in this movie behave predictably and boringly. The plot itself is more thin than you can imagine. The characters are either saying something too immature for their age or too mature. Honestly, the emotional levels in this film feel like a bad episode of Melrose Place. (Note, I chose a TV show with characters in their late 20's. That's on purpose, because these kids vascillate between acting like they're 9 or acting like they're 27.) Oddly, the television show the OC (which I couldn't sit through but my wife watched for fun) had characters who are more believable high school students than these kids in Normal Adolescent Behavior. And those characters were awful.
I will add that technically it feels more like an amateur video than a movie. It is shot like a TV episode, with the camera always too close to the the actors. There are rarely establishing shots and there are many shots out of focus. The sound mix is also odd. Scenes inside a high school are quiet as a church with no ambiance at all, which adds to the lack of realism.
I would say more, but I've already been more critical than I wanted to be. Honestly, this was one of the worst films that I ever managed to sit all the way through.
I expect all of the kids I know to reject this film outright. If you thought my comments were negative, wait until this movie gets released. It just occurred to me that kids loved Napoleon Dynamite because, in spite of the ridiculousness of it, that film managed to portray that time in life honestly. Normal Adolescent Behavior will probably get a two word review from most. The first word is an animal with horns that loves cows and the second word is what that animal leaves behind a few hours after a good meal.
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