TIFF 2016 Review: The Edge of Seventeen is a Predictable but Enjoyable Film.
Edge of Seventeen is the story of Nadine, an anti-social, cynical, and awkward teenager who is struggling through the daily high school life. Nadine has one brother, Darian, who appears to have it all. He is attractive, popular, and a star athlete. Their relationship is extremely strained following a tragic event that happened in their lives. The tension reaches a boiling point when one night, Nadine finds her best and only friend, Krista, in bed with Darian. This sends Nadine spiraling and into a bunch of really poor life decisions.
Nadine is played by Hailee Seinfeld. The casting as her in this role is perfect. She is a great representation of an average girl in high school. Her performance is the film is great with perfectly delivered quips and sarcastic comments. Her banter with her teacher, Mr. Bruner (Woody Harrelson) are some of the best parts of the film. His “no bullshit” attitude really compliments Nadine and pushes her in a way she can understand. Another of my favorite performances was from Hayden Szeto who played Erwin. Again, he was an awkward and goofy high school kid who you just have to love. He is shy and funny and the lines are perfect. I may have fallen for Erwin.
The message behind Edge of Seventeen is of course a great message about finding a way to love and appreciate yourself and those around you. I don’t have an issue with that but more the fact that the story is really predictable and superficial in a way. It doesn’t get into the dark places that could’ve made it much more powerful.
The Edge of Seventeen is a cute and funny coming of age tale with great casting and performances. Unfortunately, an extremely predictable story make the film forgettable.