All the Real Girls

I’m boggled. This is the twenty-something filmmaker who was hailed as a real find? All the Real Girls confirms my suspicion that young, eager-beaver filmmakers should stick to subjects that youngsters can handle, like adventure movies or sci-fi action or the like. But never assume that just because you have poetic sensibilities, that your movie will convey something substantial. More often that not, the products of such filmmakers lack the sense of conveying a coherent theme or idea beyond the nominal or obvious.

All the Real Girls is about young love told by a young filmmaker, and, yet, it’s absolutely unsure of itself. Perhaps, then, movies like this prove that young love is a complex topic, too much so, for someone who hasn’t crossed to the other side of youth and experience. All Gordon Green can manage are wispy, dreamy images, blunt-edged characters and dialogue, splattered like so-much Cheese Wiz over a shapeless mess of a pseudo-poetic narrative. My theory: Get past thirty, read a lot of good literature, master the craft of storytelling and reflect honestly on your personal experience before you start shaping that experience into stories. Irritably bad performances all-around add to the slop: Why do each of the characters in Green’s movies sound retarded or verbally challenged? Except for one sharp scene from Patricia Clarkson, every bit of dialogue is obtuse, rambling and about as compelling as mud. A waste of time, unless you’re of the Sundance crowd.

Grade: C-

Directed by: David Gordon Green
Written by: David Gordon Green
Cast: Paul Schneider, Zooey Deschanel, Danny McBride

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