The Edge of Seventeen (2016)
Directed By: Kelly Fremon Craig
This post should have been out the first week of December, but I was so busy with life that I didn’t get a chance until now to talk about The Edge of Seventeen.
I love this movie. It’s definitely a chick flick that you should watch with your favorite girls, which is what I did.
Life has been difficult for seventeen-year-old, Nadine Franklin after her father’s death. Her mother favorites her older brother, Darian, as the perfect son. Also, Darian makes Nadine’s life even more miserable by going out with her best friend, Krista.
Nadine represents every teenage girl that has ever felt awkward, introverted, and isolated. She’s cynical and sarcastic with her jokes, and at times, she pushes things too far to the point of hurting a person’s feelings. She’s definitely the perfect example of teenage angst. I can relate to Nadine because I can get pretty blunt and critical of other people. However, I don’t think I’m that self-centered as Nadine because, throughout the film, Nadine feels like the whole world revolves around her and she gets overdramatic and blows every single issue she has out of proportion, but then again, that’s how every high schooler feels so I can give her the benefit of the doubt on that one. Yet it is at the end of the movie that Nadine finally learns to accept the world as it is (she isn’t the only one that has a horrible life). She constantly blames her brother for her problems because he is known as the popular, shining student and son, but when learning about her own brother’s feelings, she realizes that every person has his or her own problems.
However, the one actor that stole this movie is Hayden Szeto as Erwin Kim. I watched some commentary on The Edge of Seventeen prior to watching this film, and in an interview, Hayden Szeto discusses his approach to Erwin Kim. He states that he wants to convey Erwin in the mindset of a teenage boy who wants to “win at life,” particularly the rollercoaster of emotions that a boy has when he likes and wants to get the girl. This is actually true to every person: we all want to succeed in our lives, whatever that may be to us. What makes Erwin Kim a lovable character is his boy-next-door charm. As a viewer, I constantly rooted for him as he attempted to become friends with Nadine as well as hinting his crush on her.
The Edge of Seventeen is on my list of favorite coming-of-age/teenage comedies. This teen drama wasn’t overbearing in comparison to other coming-of-age movies. Also, this film addresses teen issues, such as broken friendships, the death of a parent, and romance problems, with clarity and directness that it captures the dark emotions and decision-making that teenagers actually do but also adds a little flair and humor to it. And so I greatly praise Hailee Steinfeld and Hayden Szeto’s acting.