Hopelessly Quaint

Self-aware film follows unhappy teenage girl with an incredibly complicated set of step-relations. Things happen. She runs away. People react. Things happen. People learn some lessons. Things get wrapped up in a neat bow.

The film doesn't have a well defined point of view. The camera is addressed nearly half the time by Laura, our central character whose unhappiness with her situation seems to be boundless. But we keep cutting to scenes of which she'd have no knowledge. Is it her story or not?

It gets better toward the end when the dreadfully narrow stereotypes of the characters start falling away, or at least give in a little bit to reality. It comes off as somewhat fake because they've been sold to us as exactly what they seem much too effectively.

There's a bit about a bloody jacket that could have been effective, but they just drop it. This is fairly typical of the film, building up tension but losing it through sloppy and easy resolutions that are unworthy of the material.

Big Girls (etc) really comes off as an adaption of someone's real life story, exaggerated a bit for effect, with all the attached sentimentalism. It'll appeal most if you've grown with siblings, step- or not, but mainly it's just a poorly told story with little real wit or cleverness.

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