Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Flipped

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for language and some thematic material
Profanity:Brief strong language
Nudity/Sex:Mild references
Alcohol/Drugs:Social drinking
Violence/Scariness:Tense family confrontations, awkward moments
Diversity Issues:Sympathetic portrayal of disabled family member but other characters make cruel and ignorant remarks
Movie Release Date:August 27, 2010
DVD Release Date:November 23, 2010

The director of “When Harry Met Sally….” has given us a middle-school variation, an on and off love story that begins in second grade when Bryce Loski (Callan McAuliffe) and his family move in across the street from Juli Baker (an exquisite performance by Madeline Carroll). In Rob Reiner‘s film, based on a popular book for middle schoolers, Juli immediately falls for Bryce, which of course immediately makes him feel creeped out. Five years later, in middle school, he is still doing everything he can to avoid her. And she is still doing everything she can to be near him. And then, things change. She does not like him any more. And he realizes that she is a very special girl, and that he will do anything to re-earn her affection.

It isn’t just the emotions of the characters that are flipping here; it is also the point of view. We get to see the same situations from both sides, and we get to hear how the two characters’ perspectives do and do not overlap.

Reiner sets the story in the early 1960’s, and the movie has a flawless attention to period detail — the long hair parted in the middle, “Bonanza” on the television. But the essence of the story is eternal, with its impeccable evocation of that moment when we first begin to look at our families’ limits and imperfections and first begin to create the people we will grow up to be.

And not just our families. Juli does not question her love for Bryce for years. And then she becomes older and wiser and realizes that beautiful eyes do not always mean a beautiful spirit and that she really does not know him very well. Bryce may have lovely eyes, but it is not until he sees her through someone else’s eyes that he begins to appreciate her. Bryce’s grandfather (John Mahoney of “Frasier”) realizes Juli’s value first. “Some of us get dipped in flat, some in satin, some in gloss,” he tells Bryce. “But every once in a while you find someone who’s iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare.”

Co-screenwriter/director Reiner lets us share the growing understanding of Juli and Bryce as they begin to see themselves, each other, and their families differently. And with great sensitivity and insight, he evokes the agonizing sweetness of first love and the way that it stays alive in us forever, making possible all of the loves that are to come.



Previous Posts

Interview: Todd and Jedd Wider about the Bullying Documentary "Mentor"
Producers Todd and Jedd Wider generously took time to answer my questions about their documentary, "Mentor," the story of two teenagers who committed suicide following relentless bullying. The film, which received Honorable Mention for Best Documentary Feature at the 2014 Woodstock Film Festival th

posted 3:56:57pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Clip: Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ApzHJhZz2JQ" frameborder="0"] The latest in Disney's animated Tinkerbell series adds Ginnifer Goodwin to the cast. Coming in March of 2015, it explores the ancient myth of a mysterious creature whose distant roar sparks the curiosity

posted 1:23:59pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: "Avatar" Villain Stephen Lang on Playing a Good Guy Coach in "23 Blast"
Stephen Lang is best known for playing the villain in "Avatar." But in "23 Blast," based on the real-life story of Travis Freeman, a high school football player who lost his vision but stayed on the team, Lang plays a good guy, the coach who encouraged and supported him. I talked to Lang about actin

posted 5:56:30am Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Birdman (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Filmed as though it was almost entirely one long, stunning, audacious, breathless and breathtaking shot, "Birdman" (subtitled "The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance") explodes with ideas and visions, adopting the language of dreams to explore and upend the very idea of storytelling. Michael Keaton p

posted 5:59:46pm Oct. 23, 2014 | read full post »

John Wick
This is a movie directed by two stunt men, which means it is pretty much a first-person shooter video game projected onto a movie screen. But that also means that it is directed by people wh

posted 5:44:02pm Oct. 23, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.