Throw a reunion if you’ve graduated within the last ten years because “Booksmart” is the most accurate depiction of what it’s like to be a high schooler in the 2010s.
When men participate, it’s an event. When women participate, it’s a show. In video games, male characters wear full suits of armor; female characters wear metal bikinis. In comic books and superhero movies, men wear tactical suits and are featured in fight scenes; women wear outfits designed to show off their breasts and are featured posing in impossible yoga positions. In sports, boys play the game; girls play the game too but they have to do it while wearing a skirt and looking pretty. It doesn’t seem to matter what the actual activity is—there seems to always be a double standard when it comes to men’s and women’s activities.
I don’t know about you, but I get chills by the intimacy of the details. Her films vary in story, but no matter what the story is about—a seventeenth-century queen, spoiled teenagers in Hollywood, a middle-aged celebrity traveling in Tokyo—I know that I’m going to be enchanted by the artistry of the cinematic details that bring me deeper.
The question of who might be trustworthy is a constant point of contention in Bart Layton’s vision in the 2018 film “American Animals.” Can we trust the characters? Can we trust the real people involved in the real situation? Can we even trust ourselves as viewers? Layton creates a world mimicking that of a dream that goes beyond the idea of “zero boundaries” between what is real and what is not.