The one good thing about living and working in America at the moment is being able to see films that don’t have a release date back home. Usually they will end up getting a release date, but sometimes there will be one or two films that may slip through and not get a release date in Ireland. I have a feeling that this could be the case with the film ‘Eight Grade’.

Courtesy of Sundance Institute

I can openly say that this is one of the ordinary films I’ve ever seen in my life, and I absolutely loved it.

Eight Grade is the directorial debut of Bo Burnham, a comedian and former Youtube star. The film follows Kayla (Elsie Fisher) as she is graduating from eight grade and moving into high school, all while she is dealing with all the problems that comes with being a teenager in that position.

The one great aspect of the film is that it really captures real life on film. The film is unbelievably awkward. In its humour and how everyone talks to each other. It’s great to see just how being a teenager really is portrayed on the screen.

Courtesy of Sundance Institute

The cinematography is also extremely dull. Only in moments where Kayla surrounds herself in social media are the only bright colourful visual moments of the film. Writing it may make it seem terrible, but it actually really gives the film a different quality about it.

The character of Kayla is probably one of the more relatable characters I’ve seen in a long time. Being unsure of herself, making lots of Youtube videos that no one will probably ever watch. Trust me, anything she does I’ve done and pretty sure a lot of us have done the same things as well.

The performance of Elsie Fisher as Kayla is absolutely amazing. The thing is about her performance is that it is a very less is more approach. There is a lot of restraint in her performance because she’s just basically acting how a normal teenager would act. Even when there are moments where she interacts in social situations is totally relatable and she adds a realistic quality to it. It is such a down to earth performance that it is amazing as to what she does with it.

The social aspect is probably the only film where it’s portrayed really well. It shows the age of where kids nowadays being raised by the internet and social media. As a person who was just in the early stages of being hooked on the internet when I was really young, the way they portray social media is something that I really did enjoy.

Overall I can’t say enough how badly everyone should go and see this film if it does end up getting a release date in Ireland. If it doesn’t then that will be a great shame because it is a truly mesmerising film. Even after reading this and you’re still unsure of whether you want to see this film, just see it for the Rick and Morty impressions. Seeing them alone will make it worth it.

By Emmet McCabe

 

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