Entertainment Rating: 4 of 5The trailer really sold me on this show. It had great music and what seemed to be a pretty promising story. The story was a little long, but told in a really cool way. We’re shown half of the movie from the point of view of a young boy and the other half of the movie is the same as the first (it’s broken up into more than just two halves), but told by a young girl who has a crush on the young boy and happens to live across the street from him. It was our Valentine’s day show, not terribly romantic, but a little lower key than what Scott Pilgrim might have been.
Moral Rating: 4 of 5This was an easy going film, but at the same time presented some very deep issues. Beyond the awkward boy/girl relationships we get a good look at prejudices and heartaches from two different sides. A lot of times we only get the one perspective in a film (or in life), not multiple. We see that we can’t always lie or hide behind a lie; who we are will show through no matter what we try to do to cover things up. Bryce takes the whole movie to realize who he is and to be comfortable with it. He spends too much time trying to make other people happy (except Juli) and as a result he’s never really happy. Juli helps him (inadvertently) become the good guy he is in the end.
Juli was a very good girl, who had a strong character and really knew what she wanted in life and got it (at least as far as her influence reached, Bryce was a little harder to “get”). Bryce on the other hand was a lot weaker and struggled with knowing when to stand up for something that was right. A lot of the differences between the two could be seen in their families’ lives and how they treated each other and how they spent time together at home. While the mothers of Bryce and Juli shared something in common, the two fathers were quite opposite and had a lot of influence on how their families behaved.
The overarching symbol of the Sycamore tree added a nice touch to the overall flow of the show. We can choose to see life and the world from a broad, reaching perspective or be content to live our own lives in our own little world and never try to learn about or love others.
There was a little more language than in most PG movies, probably similar to the Sandlot and some dialog that contributed to the rating, but overall we enjoyed it.