REVIEW: The Myth of the American Sleepover

10 03 2015

American SleepoverI remember being 15 years old like it was just yesterday.  It was a time of excitement and newness as well as a period of confusion, longing, and frustration.  You begin to realize what it is that you personally want yet only have a rudimentary vocabulary to express it. The world seems so full of promise and potential, but so much of it seems locked away out of reach.

David Robert Mitchell’s atypical teen film “The Myth of the American Sleepover” captures this post-pubescent milieu with shocking accuracy.  He presents a vast array of characters in his ensemble, at least one of whom has to strike some sort of chord with a viewer.  They resist stereotypes and stock characterization quite ably, getting to the heart of what it really means to endure and enjoy this critical life juncture.

Mitchell’s script essentially consists of prolonged conversations between the characters, not advancing any sort of linear plot but rather chipping away at the facade they put up for others to view.  After a while, the film starts to run in circles and overstay its welcome as it ponders over the same adolescent conundrums.

Nonetheless, “The Myth of the American Sleepover” is a special kind of coming-of-age movie, simply because it does not show the process of change over a period of time.  Over the course of a single weekend at the end of summer, we learn all we need to know.  I just wish I had this movie to watch when I was still a teen and not discovered it as a twentysomething.  B2halfstars



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