THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL – Rated R

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“It feels so good to imagine that he might be thinking about me…”

THE LADIES HAVE IT!!! ~ Meaning…who better to tell the story of a teenage girl “coming of age” than female Director/Writer Marielle Heller and Writer Phoebe Gloeckner, as they transport us back to the 70’s to live out the sometimes tragic, sometimes youthful, sometimes profoundly emotional, yet sometimes extremely comical life of a teenage girl, with their new film ~THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL.

As we enter the life of 15-year-old Minnie (Bel Powley), she is floundering in the world her mother Charlotte (Kristin Wiig) has created in San Francisco for her and her younger sister Gretel (Abby Wait). This world, filled with a mother who is struggling with life herself, who happens to always be high it seems, and who is playing house with her boyfriend, the charming Loser Monroe (Alexander Skarsgard), it seems this life isn’t the “perfect scenario” for anyone involved.

When a flirtation between Minnie and her mother’s boyfriend turns into an all out AFFAIR, Minnie is thrown into a “sexual haze”, longing for constant admiration from her “new beau” and seeking refuge in other young men’s arms as well…

When these trysts begin to overwhelm Minnie and her psyche, as everything in her new ADULT LIFE is becoming “sexually focused”, she begins to share her thoughts and feelings through “her doodles”, as she is a very gifted artist ~ and of course, she must share her thoughts and feelings on her cassette recorder and the end of each day too…

Minnie’s only FIRM GRASP ON REALITY, as she tries to make her way through her new tumultuous ADULT LIFE – is provided by her stepfather Pascal (Christopher Meloni), who has an inkling something isn’t quite right in Minnie’s life, but just can’t put his finger on all “the changes” he sees…

I give THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL 3.5 out of 5 Stars – or ~ WAIT TO SEE IT ON DVD!!! Even though Bel Powley is FANTASTIC as Minnie – she takes on very ADULT SUBJECT MATTER and plays it flawlessly…. I wasn’t sold on Wiig or Skarsgard’s performances – and what little screen time Meloni had, didn’t add anything too significant to this film either. Another flaw in this film for me was the absentee parenting and adults taking advantage of a situation to appease themselves, which I am never fond of viewing or experiencing. I also was surprised by the explicit sex portrayed throughout the film – I am by no means a prude, but the nymphomaniac tone did catch me a little off guard at times. This film is definitely one that you should experience yourself prior to letting your teenagers experience it, as this film is R-rated FOR SURE! And, even though I enjoyed “the free spirit feel of the 70’s” being portrayed…and the “teenage naiveté” way Minnie shares her life with her cassette player ~ the way the storyline glorified the “sexual prowess” of Minnie and her teenage girlfriend was a little hard to swallow – I know it’s suppose to be the 70’s, but come on! Plus, other parts of this film seemed to wander off into never-never land, never to be seen from again…thus forcing me to give this film this slightly above average rating…

Kathy Kaiser