Sunday, January 20, 2019
‘Eighth Grade’ Offers Comic Yet Empathetic Take on Angst of Generation Z
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Tuesday, January 8, 2019
 

BY KAREN BOSSICK

What happens when an introverted teenager girl tries to survive the last week of her disastrous eighth grade year?

Find out when the Sun Valley Community School Parents’ Association hosts two free public screenings of “Eighth Grade” on Friday, Jan. 11.

The first will be at 8:30 a.m. and the second at 5:30 p.m. in the school theater.

The 2018 comedy-drama written and directed by Comedian Bo Burnham follows the struggles of an eighth-grade girl played by Elsie Fisher during her last week of classes before moving on to high school.

She struggles with social anxiety, earning a “Most Quiet” award from her classmates.  But, still, she produces video blogs giving life advice about confidence and self-image that get almost no views.

The film examines the use of social media, mental health in Generation Z and sexuality and consent precipitated by an awkward game of truth and dare. And it illustrates the girl’s father’s efforts to connect with her.

Burnham was inspired by his own struggles with anxiety when he began writing the screenplay.

The film premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and was released theatrically in July. Made for $2 million, it has grossed more than $13.5 million.

It received numerous awards and is nominated for four Independent Spirit Awards, including Best Feature. Fisher was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actress.

It was given an approval rating of 99 percent by Rotten Tomatoes, called “sweet and intelligent” by critic Richard Roeper and hailed as “special and unique for its empathy” by Peter Travers. Even Molly Ringwald tweeted it was the best film about adolescence she’d seen a a long time. “Maybe ever,” she added.

 

 

 

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