A fully realized and moving narrative is enhanced by an adorably fantastic cast, making Makino’s film debut all the more worthwhile.

Written and directed by Mei Makino, Between girl it’s a genuine and heartwarming story about growing up, facing the consequences of actions, and finding yourself on the road. Stories about coming of age are difficult to understand, but Makino’s writing is sincere and there is a deep understanding of the main character, which makes Between girl such a joy to see. A fully realized and moving narrative is enhanced by an adorably fantastic cast, making Makino’s film debut all the more worthwhile.

Between girl Instantly interact with your audience by doing something unique. It’s a coming-of-age story that sees its protagonist, Angie Chen (Emma Galbraith), shooting a video for her future self. At this point in Angie’s life, not everything is going so well. Her parents recently divorced after years of arguments and disagreements, which means that Angie now lives with her mother and only sees her father twice a month. She is frustrated when she discovers that her father moved out so early and is now dating another woman. Meanwhile, the distance between her and her mother continues to grow. At school, Angie has a crush on Liam (William Magnuson), who drives her to school every day. Things get complicated when Angie and Liam start sleeping together despite the fact that he has an influential girlfriend, Sheryl (Emily Garrett).

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Makino perfectly encapsulates Angie’s teenage struggles, from her inability to deal with her parents’ divorce and misbehavior to feeling like the only person she can talk to about her problems is herself (via video) . Yet there is never a single moment that feels inauthentic or artificial, with Makino seamlessly turning from one aspect of Angie’s life to the next. Also, Angie gets to experience a full range of emotions and Galbraith portrays each one with such sincerity and depth that the audience will have a hard time not feeling with and for her. The actress masterfully balances Angie’s self-confidence with layers of her insecurities.

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The character is lost and confused, navigating the changes in his life lashing out in anger and pain (an avoidance tactic no doubt). However, Angie is emotionally intelligent and she also knows when enough is enough. Makino gives you time to understand and grow in a meaningful and fulfilling way. Life is tough and being a confusing teenager but Between girl handles the elements of adolescence without a hint of pretense and with a lot of heart. Angie leaving videos for her adult self is not unique, although there is something wonderfully endearing about this act that makes the story even more memorable.

The concept shows Angie’s ability to be honest with herself in a way that she cannot be with others. There is a sense of trust and humility that carries on until Angie is ready to talk to others like she does and it is quite beautiful. The film’s main source of conflict, Angie’s affair with Liam, is also handled delicately. He doesn’t overdo his welcome and gives Angie several moments of clarity. The plot even offers Cheryl, who is one-dimensional at the beginning of the film and someone Angie thinks is the “it” girl, a chance to become a much more multifaceted person. The film also relates to Angie’s dual identity as a half Chinese-American teenager, the confusion she feels due to not being fluent in Mandarin, and the gap that seems to widen when she learns that her father has hidden parts of his identity from her as a Chinese immigrant. growing. Angie deals with these complicated issues with credibility as she works to understand and rethink her life.

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When it comes to most coming-of-age stories, balance is hard to strike, honest self-reflection, and authenticity even more so. Nevertheless, Between girl manages to convey the struggle of its protagonist in an identifiable way while providing the space for its development. Makino’s use of a video footage time capsule works incredibly well in this case, cleverly providing exposure and genuine emotional strikes and conflicts for Angie. Galbraith is outstanding as Angie and the strength of her acting, coupled with a fantastic supporting cast, further bolsters the film. Makino has a strong sense of narrative direction and, with fluent and well-placed writing and dialogue, Between girl It may be one of the best coming-of-age stories in some time.

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Our rating:

4 of 5 (Excellent)

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