Eighth Grade (2018)


Eighth Grade

A24 with another home run again. Hands down, the best production company going today. A gold mine of great films to boot. As soon as I heard about this film I knew this was going to be good. It looked funny, oddly relatable, and like something that was going to be important, especially for today’s generation. It was all of that in all honesty. This film is also heralded by an incredibly effortless (but fantastic) performance by Elsie Fischer.

The film is really a coming of age film about an eight grader named Kayla Day, as she gets ready to transition to high school. Kayla is quiet and somewhat lonely but is a very expressive person especially through her video blog. She attempts to make new friends, while juggling a relationship with her father, her crush, and everything else in between. You know, the regular middle school stuff. This is the first directional effort from comedian, Bo Burnham.

From the minute the film starts its humorous. Kayla is the epitome of a modern day young girl in a way. She’s wrapped up on her phone and social media. She has a crush on the empty headed guy in her class. She wants to be friends with the popular girls. She struggles with self esteem issues. However, she’s not that simple and is beyond her years. She’s actually smart in reflecting on herself, life, and how to learn from her mistakes. Its a fairly interesting character study that is so relevant for today’s generation.

It is definitely easy to identify with a lot of the awkardness associated with social interactions and growing up in this film. This is an extremely impressive debut for Bo Burnham, really sharp writing and contextual in all aspects. Elsie Fischer is downright fantastic in this film. One of the realest performances of the year. Pretty much a breakthrough performance for her and Burnham all in one. This little effort ends up being one of the best films of the summer.



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