Congratulations to the filmmakers of Candy Jar and team Moonshine Post for the Netflix Feature Film premiere this week!
Performance Worth Watching: Two decades removed from her Oscar-winning performance in As Good As It Gets, Helen Hunt still retains that intelligent, enigmatic spark in her eyes. As the kids’ guidance-counselor, Kathy, she works hard to break these kids out of their high-achieving bubbles. It’s the old rule that if the kids are cool, the teachers should be nerds, and if the kids are uptight and socially awkward, the teachers need to be well-adjusted and bewildered. This particular story also needs Kathy to be the only purely lovable character in the movie, and Hunt sure pulls that off.
Memorable Dialogue: It’s easy to overlook, but the repetition of the phrase “Is anyone not ready?” — spoken perfunctorily, or sometimes as a challenge, before each round of debate — ends up packed with more meaning than you’re expecting by the time the movie ends. In this movie about teens speeding towards the Ivy League without a true sense of who they are, it feels more and more crucial.
Single Best Shot: After a serendipitous meeting at a movie theater while avoiding the school dance, Bennett takes Lona to the drive-thru at the local Checkers, and the sight of heartthrobby Jacob Latimore in a tux, in front of a light-up Checkers menu is the stuff of star-eyed high-schoolers’ dreams.