Movie Review: THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: pictame.com, Edition by Amber255 via Bitlanders.com
The eighth movie in the IMDb 50 best movies of 2018 list is A Quiet Place. You can read my review as I have written it already. This movie is really memorable, and I want to watch it again one day. But today we will talk about romantic drama THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST.
No, I have not watched it when it was shown in our cinema. I watched it only a couple of days ago and only because I saw this film in IMDb 50 best movies of 2018 list.
And so, the famous Emil M. Danforth's novel The Miseducation of Cameron Post moved to the screens. A film is described as sharp, sincere, and challenging, and it tells the story of a homosexual teenager in a re-education center.
To educate themselves on the realities of conversion therapy. It’s legal in 32 states in America. In the 14 states where it’s illegal, it’s only illegal for minors. I hope it shows people a new perspective. I don’t think conversion therapy is widely spoken about even within the community. It’s something that needs to be reported on. Stories need to be written about it. These struggles are blatant throughout the country and need to be exposed. - Chloë Grace Moretz
The romantic drama THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST was directed by Desiree Akhavan. She is a scriptwriter, director, and actress who has performed in Appropriate Behavior shown in 2014, nominated for Best First Script Award in the Sundance Festival. She is also one of the directors and also performs as an actor in the series The Slope.
The film has got already four awards. Let's watch!
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Official U.S. Trailer - Video credit: FilmRise Releasing via Youtube.com
The Short Story Of The Movie
The action takes place in Montana in 1980. When parents died in a car crash, Cameron Post (Chloë Grace Moretz) feels both the guilt and relief: she will never have to confess them being homosexual.
Cameron lives with the aunt converted into evangelical faith. Shortly after the sexual orientation of a teenager became clear, the relatives sent her to God's Promise Conversion Therapy Center, where teens are treated from homosexuality. Cameron's crime - distracting attempts of being yourself, the love to her best girlfriend.
In this surreal center, Cameron is interacting with two other sinners - Jane (Sasha Lane) and Adam (Forrest Goodluck) who introduced her to the pleasures of normal teenagers.
Cameron almost trusts that she may change, but when one of her classmates breaks down, she understands that the price you may have to pay for suppressing your real needs is too high. Three friends decide that their only salvation is an escape.
The LGBT film THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: twitter.com
The Content Of The Movie
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST is unique in the context of other LGBT films, as it reveals the homosexual girl's experience. In today's film industry, most of these feature films still focus more on male stories.
What does it mean being a young man in Amerika of Bill Clinton's years? If being yourself means to be misunderstood, repressed, condemned, is it worth to be yourself at all?
Adolescent in 1993: denim jackets, audio cassettes, self-identity search in the Nirvana music era represented by Curt Cobain. This decade in the United States was characterized by the break of AIDS; the public considered homosexuals being sinners, and the love to the same sexes was dangerous and harmful. Most conservative societies thought that HIV was so widespread because of the lifestyle of homosexuals.
Thus, the author of the story of the re-education's phenomenon, Desiree Akhavan wanted to understand what kind of rationalization affects people seeking to join such camps. People who consider their work a sacred mission, although their activities force the young people ignore their true nature.
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST review - rottentomatoes.com
Cameron comes to the camp early in the fall - the leaves are still colorful, the sky is still sunny. The film has little bright colors, so the peace of mind and the acting of the main character resemble the autumn slumber revealing a cozy time. It seems as if we are watching another film by director John Hughes, but the multicultural actor team reveals: the film is suitable for the audience of the new millennium, who appreciated the differences of the world.
In the stylistic sense, the 1993 year, in which history is taking place, has a role to play, but the film focuses not on the actors, the environment, but rather on the feelings.
The youth then grew up without social media, so there was little talk about homosexuality in society. It was very difficult to recognize any deviation from the norm. Being able to have another sexual orientation is not only unconventional - it didn't exist at all. To be self meant being lonely.
The film director, who grew up in a conservative Iranian family, does not hide: when she admitted being homosexual, her parents thought the gays and lesbians did not exist. After all, homosexuals in Iran today are still punished by stoning.
The name of the camp to which Cameron arrives is God's Promise as a prophecy that it will heal these young people. The adults working in the camp send a message to the youth here: God will not love you as you are if you are a homosexual.
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST review - Photo credit: ramblingfilm.blogspot.com
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST does not attempt to criticize the brutal historical past of sexual minorities. The film is about young adults and how their being's fights with constant calls for change.
It was important for the director to convey one particular moment in the life of a young man: after all, certain stages of life for personality formation can really mean a lot. This is the second film of the director, which is a fragmentary story of uncomfortable theme about attraction for the same-sex.
From the LGBT drama, the film smoothly and gently turns into a problem of fathers and children, into a problem of understanding and educating in the most general form.
How to accept your child if he is different from how you wanted to see him? How to raise him without psychological violence, without pressure and the wish to remake the other person by your understanding? What is more important - to eradicate so hated LGBT people or try to understand and love your own children?
Desiree Akhavan created an extremely modest drama, in perfect proportion combining intelligence and good taste. And the viewer received an eye-pleasing combination of short dialogues, scathing jokes, and witty irony superimposed on the social context.
Chloë Grace Moretz, Forrest Goodluck, and Sasha Lane - Photo credit: imdb.com
The film is inspired by the stories of the real re-education of young people and their experiences. Conversion therapy centers in XX century's second half in the USA were very popular among the followers of Sigmund Freud around the world. S.Freud's Conversion Therapy is trying to incite heterosexual tendencies to the homosexual person.
Only in March last year, the European Parliament issued an act condemning converging therapy and urging the EU Member States to ban any practice of such therapies. Only in March last year, the European Parliament issued an act condemning convergence therapy and urging the EU Member States to ban any practice of such therapies.
Conversion therapy is the pseudoscientific practice of trying to change an individual's sexual orientation from homosexual or bisexual to heterosexual using psychological or spiritual interventions. There is virtually no reliable evidence that sexual orientation can be changed and medical bodies warn that conversion therapy practices are ineffective and potentially harmful. - Chloë Grace Moretz
It is great that THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST refers to the topic of “healing” therapies and how these practices can affect LGBT teenagers.
To my knowledge, such therapies are also carried out in Lithuania, but, according to the approved recommendations of various world health organizations, they never produce the desired result and may have sad consequences for the future life of the young person.
50 best movies of 2018, THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: imdb.com
The Personages Of The Movie
The main characters of THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST are teenagers. They have yet to find themselves, their place in the world, and this concerns not only sexual orientation.
All adults, at first glance, could be antagonists in the film. By themselves tragically misled, they sincerely justify their absurd goals of re-education. However, the film reminds us: the world is not only black or white. Ultimately, unhappy adults are in many ways former unhappy children and adolescents, often with many complexes and forgotten.
The problem of adults in this film is that they are trying to remake these "wrong" teenagers without even trying to figure them out, and because of this, not knowing how to approach them. Heterosexual adults here are not violent villains, but the same unhappy heroes who once lacked understanding from close people. They are completely sincere and with the best of intentions put different restrictions, but only prevent their children from developing independently.
Young adults are a good description of the heroes of the film because they define their deep thinking and wish to learn to accept and love themselves. If to say by Scriptures: My strength reaches perfection in weakness.
The romantic drama THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: twitter.com
You need courage if you want to be yourself. And environmental pressure to ignore your true nature leads to a review of fundamental values and changes. In a re-education camp, Cameron meets with people like her. So, regardless of the isolation from the surrounding world, the feeling of communion with the other appears for the first time, the opportunity not to feel alone and rejected. Being able to comprehend yourself among the deep, serious-minded young people and the adults who once experienced the same feelings.
She sincerely wants to understand herself and her actions. She herself does not feel uncomfortable with the fact that she likes girls, but the others' reaction to her homosexuality makes her begin to doubt herself. The funny thing is that in the very place where, in theory, she should be treated from homosexuality, she finally accepts herself and finds like-minded friends.
We depict these characters, these real-life struggles, while also intertwining that with the beauty of the interpersonal relationships – like being a gay person meeting gay people for the first time and realizing that you’re not alone.
Cameron, the hero of the film, mentions that she does not think of herself as a homosexual: she thinks about herself as about anything. This is a bold revolution of the young adult Cameron in an age where one must belong to something more than anything.
Cameron the closer to the end, the fewer hopes for a cure. Rather, finally ceases to consider herself a patient. Drawing icebergs as symbols of problems, heart-to-heart talks with the school principal have an effect on the girl, but only the opposite. The more they want that she starts to hate herself, the sooner she starts to accept herself. As a result, the viewer gets an answer to that main and banal question of the film.
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST review - Photo credit: news.google.com
No, the train of salvation, even if it is striving for the light, but in reality, it goes to nowhere. Therefore, it's time to jump into the ravine, without fear of breaking arms and legs. The main thing is to keep the head.
Cameron's story is predictable and hardly opens up new problems or closes old questions. However, it is made surprisingly neat, does not hurt anyone's feelings and avoids understatement. Nothing, probably, is more needed here.
The Technical Side Of The Movie
A big plus of this picture is its atmosphere. In each frame, in each scene, the spirit of a small American province is felt. Even the colors in the frame often correspond to this.
The minimalistic, frivolous plot relaxes, creating a comfortable viewing atmosphere and eliminating unnecessary tension. But looking at the picture of 1993, I must admit that I do not like this period. But maybe each of us is born in the right period, and we live at right time.
Nice soundtrack, soft tones. Perfect work of Julian Wass. Operator Ashley Connor also has done great work.
Actually, there is not much what to say about the technical side of the film. Everything looks fitting with the theme of the movie, so slow, flawless, but convincing. No action scenes, no technical mirages, no special effects, but all that is not needed in the romantic drama, right?
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST, interview with Desiree Akhavan & Chloë Grace Moretz - Video credit: HmV via Youtube.com
The Collective Work Of The Actors
The cast is chosen wisely. The viewer wants to believe in the actors' words, emotions, and actions. I especially remember the main character played by Chloë Grace Moretz.
The young and talented Chloë Grace Moretz, who plays the lead role and Jennifer Ehle as a teacher who is trying to help all these children are great in their roles. They perfectly reveal their characters, and we want to emphasize them; the viewer begins to understand them and think about their deviations from social norms.
Chloë Grace Moretz plays wonderfully; her constant monosyllabic answers are touching, something like all is well or I don't know in combination with a confused expression of the face. It is always a pleasure to watch at Chloë Grace Moretz. She is like a delicious bun, plus a smoked (or breaking) voice. The picture is straight for Sundance.
In general, the main trio (Chloë Grace Moretz, Sasha Lane, and Forrest Goodluck) in the film is charming. You can just watch at these guys for two hours, listen to them, and it will be a complete pleasure. In principle, it was. The monotony of the film and some slowness of personages - those acting colors that this movie requires.
The LGBT film THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: twitter.com
Just a question: why is Sasha Lane pushed into the supporting roles? I love her performance.
Other actors in this film: Quinn Shephard, John Gallagher Jr., Kerry Butler, Dalton Harrod, and many more.
On The Final Note
It's a story about maturing people actual not only for a young viewer. The film does not tell stories about the disadvantaged and oppressed adolescents; it does not try to rise compassion to those who feel not understood by others. And it is not one of those films trying to inspire and moralize.
Characters are organically transmitting the message and remind the spirit of the 1990s: the greatest revolution is being yourself. It is a reminder that a person is not just a label or a category. Man is just a man. Self. And it is an actual message not only for young people.
THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST says that adults are far from always right, you only need to listen to yourself, and the path of self-restraint leads to frustration, complexes, and neuroses.
At the event of THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST - Photo credit: youtube.com
Psychological abuse is the same as physical, and maybe worse - when a person is forced to go against his own nature, tirelessly manipulated, forced to accept the existing social order, traditionally oriented society. This leads, if not to tragedy, then to complexes, apathy, and suicidal tendencies.
We will be people only when we learn to listen and understand that not everyone sees the World in the same way. Everyone is free to love the other, without feeling shame and fear.
The natural, unforced sincerity is the heartbeat of this film, and it touched me on the deepest emotional level.
My rating: 8.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 87/ 100
Critics average: 7.7/10
Thank you for stopping by and reading my blog.
2019, All Rights Reserved.
You are very welcome to join Bitlanders and share your valuable knowledge and opinion.