Trudie Styler's first feature film is about staying loyal to yourself and what you stand for despite being bullied and physically assaulted. That this theme touched a nerve during the Berlinale, where it was shown in the Generation14+ youth section, was clear with a raving audience afterwards and long lines waiting before the cinema.
Bullying is still not taken serious enough in our society: nearly all people have experienced it at some time in their lives, either at work, school, leisure, at home or in the public space. Leading often to violence by the bullied person, or depression and in the worst cases suicide, the latter being the leading cause of death among the age group of 15-25. So this movie will be a good education tool for schools to discuss the theme.
The movie is fluently directed, well edited by Sophia Copolla's frequent editor Sarah Flack, has wonderful costumes and the soundtrack plus score is fitting. Although mostly aimed at a youth audience, Bette Midler and John McEnroe have small roles so the parents aren't left out. The young British actor Alex Lawther (the young Alan Turing in The Imitation Game) played the lead character Billy Bloom and has some future ahead I guess.
There is an interesting parallel with Mean Girls, as the part where Billy analyses his voters and classmates has the same kind of sociological and psychological analysis that made that movie so interesting.
During the Q&A afterwards Trudie talked about how certain bullies receive great power, sometimes even leading to the White House. And bullying is indeed often associated with the so-called dark triad (narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy).
Comedy / Drama
Comedy / Drama
In the vein of CLUELESS and NAPOLEON DYNAMITE, FREAK SHOW tells the moving, heartwarming, and hilarious story of Billy Bloom, a boldly confident, wildly eccentric teenager, who faces intolerance and persecution at his ultra conservative high school, and decides to fight back on behalf of all the misunderstood freaks of the world by running for the title of homecoming queen.
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May 30, 2018 at 06:43 PM