Beliefnet
Movie Mom

This 2008 Australian film is one of my favorites of the past few years and I am very happy that it is finally available on a US-format DVD. It’s the story of the title character, Esther Blueburger (Danielle Catanzariti), approaching her bat mitzvah and feeling like a complete outcast among the confident and willowy girls at her school. When she meets the free-spirited Sunni (“Whale Rider’s” Keisha Castle-Hughes), daughter of an even more free-spirited single mother (Toni Collette), she decides to re-invent herself. Without telling her parents, she starts attending Sunni’s school, trying out a new, cool persona. And it works.

Until it doesn’t.

Yes, lies will be discovered and lessons learned. As coming of age stories go, this one is told exceptionally well, with verve, imagination, an outstanding visual sensibility, and a great deal of understanding and compassion for its appealing heroine.

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