WORTH A LOOK?: *****
RUNTIME: 105 minutes
OUT: 24/5/2019 (UK certificate 15)
Actress Beanie Feldstein (pictured right above) is actor Jonah Hill’s sister and stars next in the film adaptation of Caitlin Moran’s fine semi-autobiographical novel How To Build A Girl.
- Read on for reasons including why this is 1 of the best films of the year so far
In hilarious coming-of-age comedy Booksmart she plays Molly who, with best friend Amy (Emily Halpern), discover to their horror on the eve of the graduation that, while they have devoted themselves to their studies to go to good colleges, their classmates who have partied have been similarly successful.
Cue the schoolmates spending the night before their graduation moving from party to party as they pursue the objects of their affections as Amy in particular seeks to form her 1st same sex relationship 2 years after coming out.
There are many things that distinguish Booksmart including the fine evocation of childhood best friends realised brilliantly when the pair meet 1st in the film and body pop to the memorable hip hop soundtrack by Dan The Automator.
Along the way we meet the best friends’ classmates and they prove to be vividly drawn including Skyler Gisondo’s Jared who throws an extravagant party on a luxury yacht which is spurned by all but his BFF Gigi played by Billie Lourd as a vacuous socialite with an unerring ability to appear at all the parties to which Molly and Amy go.
We also meet jock Nick, skater girl Ryan (who Amy has her eye on), the camp drama students who want to perform Shakespeare in the parking lot and Jessica Williams as a teacher with an unhealthy interest in her students.
Particularly well drawn is minor character Annabelle, who is nicknamed Triple A because of the roadside sexual favours she has offered boys, but has an opportunity to explain herself and her unhappiness at the way her female classmates join in the ribbing of her.
The action takes place on the night before graduation before culminating in a speech given by Molly as she reflects on what she has learned and how she has underestimated those she has studied alongside and how they have so much more life to live.
Booksmart is unusual because it has female protagonists but it’s so whipcrack-smart and hilariously funny that it’s likely to become a future classic and is undoubtedly 1 of the most brilliant films of the year.