TLDR: Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. (2023)
We must! We must! We must increase our bust!
Plot: When her family moves from the city to the suburbs, 11-year-old Margaret navigates new friends, feelings, and the beginning of adolescence.
Direction & Screenplay: Kelly Fremon Craig both adapted (from Judy Blume’s beloved tween novel) and directed this film, and the consistency between the two is apparent. The direction beautifully serves the script, and the script supports some tenderly-captured moments on screen.
Performances: Abby Ryder Fortson leads this film as Margaret, the curious and anxious 6th grader navigating the ups and downs of a budding adolescence. It’s hard to get into the nitty-gritty when it comes to a child actress, but I think she did a great job that needs a little elaboration. I feel similarly about her supporting cast of friends, most notably Elle Graham who plays Nancy Wheeler, who shines as the adamant (and occasionally bossy) queen bee of their “secret club.”
Rachel McAdams is brilliant as per usual in this motherly role. Her warmth grounds every moment, and I found myself wanting to see even more of her personal journey. Benny Safdie, who I’m not typically the biggest fan of as an actor, supports with a distinct gentleness. Kathy Bates, who I love, was a treat to watch in every scene and provides great comedic relief.
Cinematography: I’m sure this was the AMC quality of my screening, but it was very dark. I’m always a proponent of keeping things nice and bright! I wanted to turn the brightness up!
Best Moment: There were so many great moments, but the ending literally made me sob, so I feel inclined to say that.
Fun Fact: Judy Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret has never been out of print since its initial publication in 1970.
Everything is too long. Is it too long? No. I could have watched even more!
See it in cinemas or wait to stream? It hasn’t had the biggest box-office splash, so I say go support it in cinemas while you can. That said, it will have the same effect on streaming.
Rating: 4.5 awkward birthday parties out of 5.
Credit: Plot synopsis from Letterboxd via TMDb.
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