Completely unnerving and overwhelmingly awkward is how I would describe it, which pretty much sums up my teenage years, so I guess they’ve nailed it with this one.
When you’re faced with a title like this, you’re likely to assume that it’ll be filled with ungainly, first-time sexual encounters, one too many references made to ‘puberty’ and a bucket-load of angst. Although you would, in fact, be correct in assuming this, I can assure you that this film is actually so much worse than that.
Having not seen the trailer, the plot line was a little unexpected, if not a little shocking. But it was also really great. And confusing. Because it was sort of funny in an ‘I definitely shouldn’t be laughing at this’ sort of way, but I definitely laughed out loud a lot. As did my two companions.
Kristen Wiig is amazing, as always, and it’s great to see her taking on a more serious role. Bel Powley, who takes on the role of protagonist Minnie, plays the part of a teenage girl in a way that no man ever could, which sounds completely ridiculous and nonsensical, but if you’re a woman, you’ll know what I mean. And as for Alexander Skarsgard, he couldn’t have been any less attractive in it if he tried. You’ll see why when you watch it.
In short, I loved it. But at a BBQ on our recent ‘am I in Spain or am I in South London?’ scorcher of a Saturday, a friend drew my attention to something I don’t love: the fact that the film has been rated as an 18. How can a film that is centred around our awkward teenage years be accessible only to the adults who have already survived them? The truth is, I don’t know, but apparently Powley is campaigning – or at least was campaigning – to have the rating lowered so that actual teenagers could watch it and feel a little less weird about their obsession with sex, not having sex and feeling older than their years. Yes, the film touches on what it’s like to have not grown into your face yet, but it also addresses some heavier issues from teenagehood. And that’s important.
Despite my minor gripe with the certification of the movie, I would still recommend that you take your girlfriends, along with a large bag of popcorn to go and see it. You’ll squirm from the comfort of your cushioned seat throughout whilst laughing uncontrollably, hoping that the people behind you aren’t judging. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions but well worth the ride.
I must warn you, however: do not, under any circumstances, take a parent. Or someone you wouldn’t want to watch a sex scene with, such as your nan. Or a work colleague.
No, seriously, trust me on that last one.