Teenagers that are independent and real.
|"West of Pluto" is an independent French film made in Quebec. It gives us a look into the lives of several high school teenagers as they struggle with popularity, heartbreak and every day life. It sounds like the high school teen comedy or coming of age dramedy, but it’s nothing like that because it’s real. Carefully walks the line between documentary and fiction and it’s one of those films that it doesn't even matter which side of the line it's on because it has such a real feel to it.||2008 |
Directed by: Henry Bernadet and Myriam Verreault
Screenplay by: Henry Bernadet and Myriam Verreault
Starring: Alexis Drolet, David Bouchard and Sandra Jacques
The title comes from one of the kid's speeches at school about Pluto. The filmmakers were making a reference between the “former planet” and the life of the teenager—a very fitting, intelligent, and thoughtful comparison. Like the comparison the filmmakers made, the film itself is avant-garde in its presentation of the typical teenage dilemmas, giving them depth and meaning to their thoughts and feelings.
The low budget worked well, adding to the realism of the atmosphere and characters. The actors that were cast didn’t seem like actors, but real teenagers. They made you care for them. Unfortunately, there were way too many characters. I couldn’t keep them all straight and I’m sure that most of them were extraneous.
The point of introducing us to all these characters is to take us to a party through the eyes of each of them. What the party means to them, what happens at the party, and ultimately, how it affects all of them. The party, representing the climax of the film, was handled well and really went to show that no two teenagers are alike.
And no two teenager films are alike either. “West of Pluto” may be similar to “American Teen”, but it has its differences, and hey, it’s Canadian! It’s about the real struggles of teenagers, a little slow with too many characters, but it’s also intelligent and real and deserves to be seen.