Entertainment Guide in Spring

September 21, 2004

Entertainment Guide in Spring

This is a coming of age movie with a difference. Abbie Cornish stars as Heidi, a confused16-year-old who runs away from home after being caught kissing her mum?s boyfriend. She ends up in the NSW snowy mountains town of Jindabyne and sets about finding a place to stay and a man to look after her. She?s not a typical teenager who manipulates men either to enhance her power or impress her peers. She is genuinely in need of love and protection, and sex is the only vehicle she knows. She meets Joe (Sam Worthington) and while he is obviously attracted to her, like with most girls he meets he maintains his distance. He is confused about his sexuality, and his place in Jindabyne. The pair forms a kind of friendship that isn?t easy or perfect but is something they both need at that stage of their lives.

This character driven film is truly a work of art. Both the performances by Cornish and Worthington are intimate, sensitive and are a pleasure to watch. This film isn?t just focused on this couple and their relationship. Like life, we may not know or understand people?s stories and in this film we see snapshots into other characters? lives. Irene (Lynette Curran) whose son murdered someone, Richard (Erik Thompson) who is leaving the town forever and Bianca (Hollie Andrew) whose brother suffers from Asbergers. This all gives the surroundings depth and a sense of reality. Director and writer Cate Shortland has given us a movie to really think about.

Suddenly 30
This is a classic chick flick! It is Jenna Rink?s (Christa B. Allen) 13th birthday and she?s flat-chested, gawky and longs to be part of the ?cool group? at school. Her birthday party turns her into a laughing stock and when her best friend, Matt (Sean Marquette), gives her some wishing dust, she longs to be thirty and successful. She wakes up and apparently everything she dreamt of came true ? she?s the editor of her favourite magazine, Poise, she has a cute boyfriend, a great New York apartment and a wardrobe to die for. But she realises such success has come at a price. She also has no friends, never speaks to her family and is regarded as a rather large pain in the a***. Plus her former best friend Matt is nowhere to be found.

Jennifer Garner is the adult Jenna and provides a hilarious portrayal of a gawky teen in a woman?s body. She?s oh so girl-next-door ? beautiful enough to be an editor of a fashion magazine but natural enough to believe that she might have a conscience. She tracks down Matt (Mark Ruffalo) and looks at how the innocent girl she was turned into the superpower bitch she has become.

There are some hilarious moments as the mentally 13-year-old Jenna discovers how some things are done in the adult world. Think about how a young, innocent teen would react to a strip tease by a very buff Hockey player and you might understand the kind of fun that is involved here! There is also a great re-visit to the eighties with songs such as Life is a Battlefield by Pat Benetar and Jessie’s Girl by Rick Springfield.

Obviously, it?s a simple chick flick so believability isn?t an issue here. If you want to have some fun with your girlfriends, this film is a winner!

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