**No trailer available – Below is an interview w/ Dir Max Winkler & actress Zoey Deutch**
Recognized as one of the top film festivals, the Tribeca Film Festival has been held every year in New York City since 2002. With its inception it has opened another outlet for filmmakers to share their visions and for them to be shared on a world wide scale. In this opportunity come fresh new ideas and stories that as a film enthusiast are very exciting to watch on the big screen. With that in mind what if you were to take Hard Candy, The Goonies, The Breakfast Club and put them in a blender?
Max Winkler’s film Flower is a perfect example of taking old school teen genre aesthetics and pushing it forward for today’s generation. Zoey Deutch (Dirty Grandpa, Everybody Wants Some!) plays Erica who along with her two best friends seem to be a normal set of teenagers living in a dull suburban neighborhood. Well any illusion of normal are thrown out from the opening scene when Erica is performing oral sex, normal yes but her friends secretly taping everything to then immediately blackmail the unsuspecting recipient… far from it. We are immediately introduced to this group of girls who have no bounds when it comes to taking care of themselves while at the same time taking down law breaking perverts like a rag tag Scooby gang. Deutch is a real standout in the film as she plays Erica with such ease and confidence while emanating a very genuine innocence throughout.
Erica’s world is given a jolt when her step brother Luke, played by Joey Morgan (Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse) is released from rehab. Unstable, awkward, self-conscious and overweight Luke is the complete opposite of his step sister. The dynamic between Erica and Luke is fun to watch unfold as it plays off as two young adults each at a crossroads in their lives coming together to figure out where to go to next. It’s Luke’s presence that makes Erica reevaluate the world around her because it is at this point that the she needs to stop thinking just of herself. Erica goes from offering Luke a quick blowjob on the street, because as she dubs herself “The Dick Whisperer”, to getting to truly know someone for who they are. Erica puts her “skills” to use when she decides to help Luke rid a childhood trauma that is a former teacher that Luke says touched him years ago.
The cast works so well together that it makes the film feel so natural and fun to watch. Scenes with Erica and her mother, played by Kathryn Hahn (Transparent, Captain Fantastic), range from fun and ridiculous to brutally honest moments. Winkler’s film shows us the journey these two innocent teenagers take in growing as individuals which was very entertaining as the viewer to watch progress. After the screening I mentioned to Winkler how this felt like a harsh, more real version of a John Hughes’ film and to his credit was meant as an endearing compliment; Hughes was able to make audiences laugh and relate to his 80’s teen comedies that still hold up today. Winkler was able to create a film with an equal innocence and charm to it that was also able to integrate issues that would be more relevant in today’s young culture.
4 out of 5
Please follow the film through its IMDB page