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Seventeen-year-old Caroline Wexler (KAT DENNINGS) is facing a teenager's nightmare: her widowed father has moved them from the city to a tiny, nowhere town. When Caroline realizes she has nothing in common with the permanently stoned kids that populate her new school, she pursues the one person she connects with -- her handsome young teacher, Mr. Anderson (JOSH LUCAS). A bizarre love triangle ensues between Caroline, Mr. Anderson, and a stoner classmate (REECE THOMPSON).
A film by first time Director, Michael Goldbach who also wrote the story as well. This is a young, new talent that brings freshness and originality to the genre. Sadly some mainstream movie-goers might not "get" the film's style and way of telling a story but for those willing to give it a chance you are going to be rewarded with a remarkable little film. The film is basically about a love triangle between a 17-year-old, her teacher and stoner classmate. Life isn't easy for Caroline, her mom passed away and her father upped and moved Caroline to a small town where she finds a hard time finding anyone to relate to so he is immediately attracted to her teacher, Mr. Anderson. The story might sound simple but it's anything but, it shifts tone on a constant basis and dapples a bit in more than one genre. It's a drama/romance at heart but it feels a bit like a thriller at times as well especially with the serial killer subplot that is going on. All the characters in the film bring their own problems and stories to the table, it's a film teenagers can relate to as well as adults. I'm not a big fan of the use of a narrative in a film but it works here very well and it lets the audience get to know Caroline that much more. "Daydream Nation" is about good things, bad things, happy times and bad times, it's a universal story about teens growing up in a small town with little to do. As a story it's a very good film, toss in Goldbach's unique, original and refreshing style of film making and you get one of the better films of the year not many people have seen. The cast is another reason to see this film, Kat Dennings has really grown into a fine young actress and this role is her finest to date. Josh Lucas gives another original performance, he does a great job at being charming and despicable almost at the same time and funny as well. But the surprise performance to me came from Reece Thompson who is amazing as the stoner classmate, this young man has a bright future ahead of him.
Luckily for those that did not get a chance to see the film during it's limited theatrical run it is now available on DVD and Blu-ray with Special Features that include:
Behind the Scenes
I hope this review convinces some people to pick the film up that might not or originally because the story is it's own reward and it deserves a much larger audience. You can order the DVD HERE and the Blu-ray HERE. It's not often we get a film that pushes the envelope as far as film making goes let alone in a good way so I highly recommend checking it out, you will thank me later
Released by Anchor Bay Entertainment
**** Out Of *****