Sunday, 6 February 2011

Film Review: YOUTH IN REVOLT (2009)

Director: Miguel Arteta
Running time: 90 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15

Genre: Comedy/Drama/Romance
UK release date 5th February 2010

Watched on Sky+ Sunday 6th February 2011.


I was in two minds about watching this one but I had heard a couple of good things about it so I took the plunge. There were some good things about it but there was also a lot that I found very average. More of my thoughts later, here’s a brief summary first (summary haters please invent an alter-ego for yourselves while I write the next paragraph).

Nick Twisp lives with his mother, Estelle, and her current boyfriend, Jerry. For reasons I won’t go into now, they find themselves having to go and stay in a trailer park for a few weeks. Nick is into things like Sinatra LP’s and Fellini films, you know, he’s not your mainstream kind of guy. Of course this makes it very hard for him to meet girls, and being a teenager; of course he likes girls… a lot! Anyway, whilst there he meets Sheeni Saunders who has a lot of the same interests as he does. They begin to get to know each other but eventually Nick has to leave. Determined to see her again, he invents an alter-ego for himself, a suave sophisticated character called Francois Dillinger. He can say and do all the things that Nick can’t and this allows him to, not only, get his father, George, to move nearer to Sheeni, but also get his mother, and new boyfriend Lance Wescott, to send him to live with his father. This is only the start of the trouble for Nick, you see, he had to commit a crime in order to live with his father and now the cops are after him! From here on it gets a little complicated, so I won’t say any more.

First of all, what I liked; I liked the use of slow motion at the beginning of the film and the little animated segments. These were good. Also good were the scenes that included the ‘Francois Dillinger’ character, that was also good… And that about wraps up the good parts. Unfortunately Michael Cera can only play Michael Cera so many times before you ask yourself, is there anything else he can do? Well, he can play Francois Dillinger who I found much more interesting than Michael Cera, sorry, Nick Twisp. I guess I should give honourable mentions to other members of the cast… It’s not all about Cera after all… So, honourable mentions go to; Portia Doubleday as Sheeni Saunders, Jean Smart as Estelle Twisp, Zach Galifianakis (I still don’t think he’s funny) as Jerry, Adhir Kalyan as Vijay Joshi, Steve Buscemi as George Twisp, Fred Willard as Mr. Ferguson and Ray Liotta as Lance Wescott.

So, I’ve mentioned the good things and I’ve talked about Michael Cera playing Michael Cera one time too many for me. I guess the rest of it I found a little predictable and, for a comedy, not very funny. There was only one ‘laugh out loud’ moment for me in the entire film. So, over all, no great comedy, but bearable enough with the scenes featuring ‘Francois Dillinger’ being a highlight. Worth seeing for that alone, but don’t put too a high priority on it.

My score: 6.4/10

(RT = Rotten Tomatoes)
IMDb Page:
RT Page:
Official Site:

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