Saw this with CJ. Good movie. If you’re wondering, can you see this with your adolescent, definitely yes. If you’re wondering, will my adolescent have a deep conversation with me afterwards about the challenges of growing up, well, that’s not really CJ’s style but good luck with it!
My favorite thing about Eighth Grade is the way it captures the adolescent challenge seeing other human beings as actual people, like oneself, with their own interior lives. Other people, for Kayla, are still mostly instruments, things to do something with, or things from which to get a response. Or maybe she’s just at the moment of learning that other people are not just that? Very good the way she records Olivia’s name in her phone as “Olivia High School” — other people are roles, they fit in slots — the crush, the shadow, the rival. Olivia, older, engages with Kayla’s real self in a way that Kayla isn’t yet ready to reciprocate.
But why did she have to say at the end that high school was going to be cool, except math? Come on, teen movie, be better.