‘Booksmart:’ Entertaining But Trippy

Screengrab via Movie Trailers Source Kaitlyn Dever and Beanie Feldstein play as highschool students in a bizzare and confusing movie that is loaded with entertaining scenes.

Helen Bradley

Contributing Writer

Released in America on May 27, 2019, “Booksmart” was a highly anticipated film of the summer. The trailer was fast-paced and full of humor, setting the film up to be a great comedy for all ages.

And while the film was filled with emotion and humor, how the story was put together left one feeling awkward and confused.

The plot of the film can be summed up in four words; two girls, one party. What happens is literally the definition of drugs, sex and rock, and roll at a high-school level. The film is messy and unpredictable, yet also very real.

The movie tells the story of two best friends, academic overachievers, Amy and Molly, who spent their high school years studying, avoiding getting in trouble and doing everything that seemed ‘right’ in order to get into the best colleges they could.

However, the day before their graduation, they realize that they chose to not party and focus on school and get into good colleges while all their peers partied and also got into good schools.

In order to make up for everything they missed out on and prove to their peers that they can be fun, the girls embark on a mission to have the best party ever before they graduate.

Molly, played by Beanie Feldstein, is an organized, hard-working and somewhat bossy class president who, when I say this I mean it, runs the school.

Amy, played by Kaitlyn Dever, is Molly’s queer best-friend who really doesn’t seem to care that she missed out on partying in high school but goes along with everything anyways.

The rest of the cast play a sprawling ensemble of characters that all twist and break-down stereotypes.

This film puts a fresh spin on the coming-of-age comedy and highlights a variety of insecurities that many high-schoolers face.

Yet, for a film that made it onto Obama’s list of favorite movies of 2019, I was expecting something more.

Honestly, the film made me feel uncomfortable and confused, and while the directors did a good job at wrapping up the film in an emotionally ‘feel good’ way, I couldn’t shake the feeling that I had no idea what I had just watched.

The ensemble of characters is full of weird people who just appear and disappear throughout the storyline.

The biggest example of this is Gigi, played by Billie Lourd. Gigi is some crazy classmate who I honestly couldn’t tell you a thing about.

She appears at every party the girls attend, doing some wacky thing that doesn’t make sense. The directors clearly hoped this character would add background humor yet instead she just left me feeling overwhelmed by her psychotic nature.

Then there were the scenes where I generally thought I was hallucinating myself. During another encounter with Gigi, she tells Amy and Molly that the strawberries they just ate were laced with a potent drug.

Automatically, the girls start to ‘feel’ the effects and run upstairs to a bedroom where they pass out.

Suddenly, the girls wake up and they are no longer humans but Barbie Dolls. This scene goes on for about five minutes and, honestly, I could not tell you much of what happens during it as all I could keep thinking was ‘what am I watching?!’ and ‘is this real?!’

On-top of all that, the movie jumps around a lot, which adds humor to their journey but made it rather difficult to follow the storyline. Maybe it was meant to reflect the craziness that was high-school?

Don’t get me wrong, this film has a genuinely funny story-line and was fun to watch however the number of random scenes and characters are thrown into the mix made this film utterly weird.

Email Helen at:

hbradley2@live.esu.edu

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