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Young Adult, Jason Reitman (2011)

young-adult-theronThis thing makes Juno look like a Disney movie. Charlize Theron turns in an amazing performance — really, when you think about it, a performance in many ways more demanding than the one she did for Monster — as a terrified and terrifying former prom queen approaching adulthood on the asymptote. I’m not going to go into the plot here because if you have any sense you’re going to see this yourself and if you don’t then what good would it do. Diablo Cody’s script is lean and sharp. She doesn’t oversell or fake a single moment, and when she does write big furniture-chewing set pieces, they feel as utterly convincing and sickeningly inevitable as Aeschylus. The fact that all this takes place in a town that could pretty much pass for my hometown maybe twisted the knives even more vigorously for me, but this’ll stab you no matter where you’re from and/or wish you weren’t.

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