SpoilerTV - TV Spoilers

HOT NOW :

MOVIES: The Spectacular Now – Growing up has never been so ugly…and good – Review

Sutter (Miles Teller) is living the dream. As the most likable guy in his high school class, Sutter is dating the hottest girl in school, Cassidy (Brie Larson), is always the life of the party and isn’t worried about what the future brings because he’s living for the “now.” Sutter’s idyllic view of the world is shattered after his very serious drinking problem leads to a break-up with Cassidy which is then followed by waking up on someone’s lawn and not knowing how he got there. The only silver lining of his inebriated adventure is he meets Aimee (Shailene Woodley), a girl who goes to his school but whom he’s never met before. Aimee is the one thing that could (and might) save his life.

Slapping the label “a coming of age story” on a movie is a lazy and quick way to communicate to audiences that 1) you're going to see a story about youths and 2) the plot is going to have a more serious tone than, say, a movie featuring a character from a Disney TV show. The designation is rarely accurate, but gives potential moviegoers an easy way to categorize a movie. The Breakfast Club is a coming of age story; Sixteen Candles is not. Stand By Me and Boyz in the Hood are coming of age stories; Dazed and Confused and The Karate Kid are not.

The Spectacular Now can truly be called a coming of age tale because, unlike so many other movies to which that moniker is applied, a character truly does mature in some way and is able to see and interact with the world in a way appropriate to his age. Who wouldn’t want to be like Sutter when they were in high school? He’s well-liked, handsome and can carry on a conversation with just about anybody. But that façade masks a very dark inner core which Teller, as one of our most charismatic and entertaining young actors, portrays with a perfect amount of fragility.

Director James Ponsoldt (Smashed) takes us on Sutter’s journey to becoming a grown up but keeps us at a very safe distance, much like how Sutter himself prefers his relationships. We venture down the rabbit hole that is Sutter’s inner turmoil because he would never let anyone into that place. The closest we get is his moments of honesty with Aimee. Ponsoldt isn’t concerned with big, flashy performances or huge public blow-ups. He lets Sutter battle his demons in a quiet, private matter befitting a kid who is too insecure to let anyone in.

The Spectacular Now was adapted from Tim Tharp’s novel by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, the two brilliant wordsmiths responsible for (500) Days of Summer. A complete 180 degree turn from that previous film in terms of tone and dialogue, The Spectacular Now speaks the truth of what teenagers are really like: selfish, indecisive and impulsive. The words the characters speak could be pulled directly from any high school in the country with their bumbling explanations and quick-tempered reactions. Neustadter and Weber write beautifully and are fortunate to have a director and cast that so perfectly understand their words.

Teller gives his most emotionally complex performance since Rabbit Hole, balancing comedy and drama like a seasoned pro. Teller has the confidence of Vince Vaughn, allowing him to orchestrate scenes, when necessary, at his pace and daring his co-stars to keep up. But, Teller is also capable of great emotional depth that we see hidden behind his reassuring grin. Playing drunk is no easy feat, but Teller is quite astute and plays Sutter with the right degree of “I’ve got this under control” and “Let’s party.”

The true heart of the film, though, is Woodley as Aimee, the one person who cares about Sutter regardless of his drinking problem. Woodley is absolutely terrific in the film and, if there is any justice in the world, will score her second Academy Award nomination for a performance which is so naturalistic and quiet that she appears not to be acting at all. Stripped of all make up and given a thrift shop wardrobe, Woodley shines as a girl who lights up whenever Sutter is in the room and is given the confidence to stand up to her emotional abusive mother. With every smile, frown, tear and laugh, Woodley proves she is the most talented young actress working today (sorry, Jennifer Lawrence) and one who has the possibility of becoming this generation’s Meryl Streep.

It’s rare that a film is able to capture the reality of being a teenager, but The Spectacular Now manages to do just that while also dealing with issues that can affect just about anyone.

Grade: A

Problem Detected - Comments, Video and Images Not Loaded

If you're seeing this it means you're having trouble loading the site.

This is normally caused by an Extension/Addon installed in your Browser such as Adblock, Adblock Plus, Ghostery, Admuncher, AVAST! etc. You should try whitelisting www.spoilertv.com and spoilertv.co.uk domains to ensure that all content is properly loaded.

See the Troubleshooting Guide Here
Print FriendlyFull Screen
We welcome relevant, respectful comments.
Click here to Read our Comment Policy

SpoilerTV Comment Policy

We pride ourselves here at SpoilerTV with the quality, friendlyness and respectfullness of our community. All comments in English please.

Name-calling, personal attacks, spamming, excessive self-promotion, condescending pomposity, general assiness, racism, sexism, any-other-ism, homophobia, acrophobia, and destructive (versus constructive) criticism will get you BANNED from the party.

If you have a problem with a comment, DO NOT REPLY TO IT.

Instead Click the Dropdown Icon/Arrow to the right of the offending comment and click the Flag link from the dropdown. Our Moderation Team will then deal with any inappropriate comments.

We hope you enjoy your time here at SpoilerTV
SITE CONFIGURATION

Here at SpoilerTV we allow you to personalize your experience by allowing you to customize various items on the site. Close the popup to save your changes

Background Colour Picker
Enter the HEX Code of the colour you would like to use as a background. To get a HEX code goto the colour picker and pick your color then paste in the # number including the # at the front. eg #000000 is black #ffffff is white

Thumbnail Type
Rounded Sharp Circle
Square None Grid (3 cols) Grid (Beta)
Theme Color
Light (Default)
Dark (Beta)
Unread Indicator
Unread Off (Default)
Unread On

Banner Selector
All you need to do is to put a link to your banner in the box below and press the Click Button. (For best results your image should be 1090px wide and 200px high.). We have more banners in our Banner Gallery here.

Enter the URL of your Image or pick from one below