"West of Pluto" is an independent french film made in Quebec. It gives us a look into the lives of several high school teenagers as they struggle with popularity, heartbreak and every day life. It sounds like "American Teen" and it certainly deserves comparison. It's one of those films that walks the line between documentary and fiction and it doesn't even matter which side of the line it's on because it has such a real feel to it.
The film's title comes from one of the kid's speeches at school about Pluto. The filmmakers were making a reference between the 'planet' and the life of the teenager - a very fitting, and cool comparison. The cast and characters in this film were wonderful and very real. They made you care for them. The film builds towards a party which most of the kids are going to. The build-up and the events at the party were very well handled.
I found that they introduced me to way too many characters. I couldn't keep them all straight, and I wasn't sure what the filmmakers were trying to tell me about some of the characters. This detracted a bit from the overall quality and enjoyment of the film.
If you like movies about the real struggles of teenagers, then this is a must-see for you. Perhaps a little slow-moving for some people, but its intelligent and real. It's very similar to "American Teen", and perhaps "American Teen" shows some of the high school struggles better, but this film has its differences, and there's no reason why you can't see both.
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