The Edge of Seventeen Review
The Edge of Seventeen is a comedic drama which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 18, 2016 and was later released in theaters November 18, 2016. It was directed by Kelly Fremon Craig and produced by James L. Brooks. The film stars Hailee Steinfeld (Nadine), Woody Harrelson (Mr. Bruner), Kyra Sedgwick (Mona), Haley Lu Richardson (Krista), and Blake Jenner (Darian). The plot revolves around seventeen-year-old Nadine Franklin as she grapples with being a teenager.
The plot follows the adolescent Nadine and her feelings of inadequacy. The film starts off abruptly as Nadine barges into her teachers office. She claims she's going to commit suicide. Her teacher (who apparently can care less) offers to hear her out. The film then recounts the moments up to the point of when she enters the office.
The story of the film is original and relatable. Instead of being simple and one-note, the film is complicated and complex. Also, the film covers topics that not only plague today's youth but adults as well. Serious topics such as unrequited love, death, existence, faith, and sex are all here. And the film also tackles the stereotypical, high school issues and attitudes that high school is known for. It should be noted that the film finds a way to takes itself seriously and not take itself seriously at the same time. The combination is a breath of fresh air.
Nadine is remarkable and avoids being the high-school archetype. She admits to being an old soul and almost relishes in the fact that she has nothing in common with most of her peers. However, Nadine is a very real person. She has flaws and isn't perfect. And her awkwardness and dry humor is brilliant and quite charming.
This a nice, telling movie about surviving adolescence. Hailee's performance is memorable and spectacular. The film is authentic and delivers important life lessons that everyone can learn from. The dialogue is smart, funny, and serious. It's strong points also lie not only in its subject matter but its characters. There are layers to their personalities and real character development from beginning to end. Family and friendship couldn't be more emphasized. You get a sense that deep down they really do love each other.
The shining performances by Hailee Steinfeld, Woody Harrelson, and the cast bring the characters to life. Lastly, it is awkward and laugh out loud funny. The film emphasizes growth and I believe I've grown a bit as well after watching The Edge of Seventeen.
The Edge of Seventeen is currently on Blu-ray/DVD.