It doesn’t take long Graduation Year To illustrate her bizarre premise, which centers on a famous high school student who wakes up from a two-decade coma, hopes to get back where she left off, and strives to finish her freshman year at the age of 37. Within minutes, we are transported into the struggle of this woman’s chaotic state of arrested development. Although directed by Alex Hardcastle and screenwriters Andrew Knauer and Arthur Bailey and Brandon Scott Jones Take seriously the clever concept of a person whose time in high school is over, much like a genius 21 Jump Street And Not kissed Doing so, this Netflix original lacks the power of its cinematic predecessors to stick to landing.
After moving to the United States from Australia, impressionable teen Stephanie (Angourie Rice) was desperately seeking to adapt to a popular audience. Reflecting on trendy magazines and MTV, dressing appropriately, and following accepted social norms helped our young heroine become the most popular girl in her high school by her senior year. She’s now on track for her so-called perfect life — driving a red cabriolet convertible, dating the hottest guy in the class, Blaine (Tyler Barnhardt), and earning the title of cheerleader — or so she thinks. Tragedy strikes when jealous bully Tiffany (Anna Yee Puig) ruins the show, bring it– Cheerful routine, the 17-year-old lands in a hospital bed, stuck in a coma.
On her 37th birthday, Stephanie wakes up to find that not only has her body changed, but also the world around her. There are all kinds of new popular things, from cell phones to stars, to get acquainted with, and not all of that comes as a welcome surprise. Her teenage aspirations to own the most gorgeous home in town one day quickly fade when she discovers that Tiffany (Zoe Chow) and Blaine (Justin Hartley) are married and live there. However, rather than go into a state of shock, she decides to put her life back on track, go back to school and achieve the one goal she couldn’t: be crowned the Queen of Prom. However, doing so proves difficult because the school has long rejected competition and must navigate contemporary social norms to win it back.
The film is painfully simplistic in its execution, which often underestimates the value of its clever structure, and features undesirable and poorly drawn characters, the film works overtime to make the audience actively hate it. Stephanie’s two best friends – Seth (Sam Richardson) an insecure little dog puppy and affectionate slut Martha (Mary Holland) – act like her conscience, but forgive her very easily when inevitably asked. Others like Tiffany and her daughter Brie (Jade Bender), Stephanie’s contemporary rival, face an unearned change, despite giving the latter the most compelling arc in the story. In addition, satisfying decisions are perceptibly silenced, reduced by thwarting creative choices.
Since the protagonist is a transplant from 2002, and her way of speaking (overusing the term “slut”), dance, and a dress that was pulled straight from that year, the positive vibes for this movie are on par with the famous teenage hooligans of the era. This level of insight seems accidental as none of these filmmakers come up with their own ideas. It’s not entirely bad, however, as they comment admirably on gender stereotypes and politics, making some hilarious out-of-water jokes at Stephanie’s expense in the process.
Wilson, who previously played a woman with a head injury in the funniest and most intense romcom Isn’t this romantic, perfectly brings out the pampered and selfish physique of a teenage girl – she pretends to be embarrassed, touches her face with her hands, pats her shoulders and makes a gentle moan. Her simple difference also raises the level of the material, specifically in the third chapter, when the script calls her to sell the inevitable change of her personality from selfish to selfless. Her scenes with writer and actor Jones, with whom he also co-stars in the aforementioned film, show the sweet relationship between them, but unfortunately she can’t save the picture.
There aren’t many recent films that focus on a female midlife crisis, and it’s doubtful that this would inspire more production – which is unfortunate, considering that with more skill and care, Graduation Year It could have been much more meaningful, even really noisy. While bluff and bluff tricks don’t go much in the way of the heart or humour, her quick pace and the comedic prowess of the leading lady make her worthy enough for your Netflix queue. Just don’t expect to throw your hat in the air when it’s over.