Let me start by saying I hadn't heard of this film until my girlfriend rented it she's a film student at NYU . And judging by the cover and the title I had low expectations. So I was surprised to find a weird, funny, strangely beautiful movie wedged between the usual coming-of-age shenanigans. In a lot of ways it reminded me of my favorite writer, Haruki Murakami, in that the setting was banal but the plot and I use that word loosely was brimming with odd visual non sequiturs and tangents that were occasionally left dangling. There's a girl who has an affair with her teacher, a <more>
burning cloud of smoke, a killer in a white suit, a series of car crashes, kids who smoke everything in their kitchen to see what will get them stoned...the list goes on and on. But the thing is, it almost all works! It's almost like magic realism, albeit in a more grim, apocalyptic setting. So if you're someone who likes linear films, or films that follow all the rules, you'll probably not like this. But if you're like me and you get bored of seeing the same thing over and over, this feels pretty fresh. It definitely entertained me and stuck with me -- especially the ending. Oh yeah, and don't pay attention to the box. This movie has nothing in common with Juno or Donnie Darko which is sci-fi, for Christ's sake . I have a feeling people latched on to that comment and let it color how they saw the story. So to sum up, I wouldn't recommend this movie to everyone, but I was moved by it and enjoyed its shaggy poetic qualities and erratic twists and turns.10/10 Lee
It's a rarity to see a contemporary film about a teenage love triangle handled with such nuance and humor... Mike Goldbach's heart-rending dialogue and dreamy directing style resulted in a delicious, hot, compelling, and generally stunning film. Not since Ghostworld has there been a film that so deftly captures the bleakness and existential angst of teenage life. The performance of Kat Dennings has a slyness that evokes Nabokov's Lolita. There's a twisted complexity to her wisdom that could have -- if handled poorly -- could have come across as contrived or cloying, but thanks <more>
to Goldbach's subtle writing, she's a wholly endearing character. The same goes for the rest of the cast. And the soundtrack is an indie wet dream. I cannot wait to see what he does next.
Just saw this movie on the weekend and thought it was really unique, in a good way. I didn't really see much accuracy in the Juno comparison at all, besides the fact that they both have female lead characters. Kat Dennings seems much more complicated and messy than Juno, though maybe not always as charming. Then again, the tones and flavors of the films are completely different, with Juno being much more straight ahead funny, and this movie being darker and more sexual, though I definitely had some laughs. I don't think this film will be to everyone's tastes what indie film would <more>
be but it hit the sweet spot for me: sexy, funny, very odd, and beautiful images.
Kat Dennings's stunning performance just blew me away as a city girl who ends up in a strange small town for a year when "everything happened". She's funny and wry, and the next thing you know she breaks your heart. There's a lovely balance in this movie of humor and lyricism and incredible tension, and Dennings is just one of a number of unforgettable characters. Josh Lucas sneaks up on you with another original performance -- he's charming and despicable and hilarious. But the real surprise is Reece Thompson, who I'd never seen before, as a high school kid <more>
muddling his way through grief and first love. The movie looks amazing and the writing sings.
An edge-of-your-seat coming-of-age drama (by napierslogs)
In a small town where teachers sit in front of apathetic kids in the classroom and teenagers have nothing better to do than find household items that might get them high, "Daydream Nation" sneaks in and takes everything by storm. Caroline Kat Dennings is new in town and it's not that she loves to cause strife or turmoil, but she's smarter than her fellow classmates and she's looking to define herself just as any smart, lonely teenager would do. This is the year that everything happens.With an industrial fire burning, a serial killer on the loose, and Caroline falling <more>
in love with her teacher Mr. A Josh Lucas , the film sets up such a dark, mysterious, chilling atmosphere that you'll be drawn towards this town and these characters and then want to find a safe place to watch from.Some of these characters will break your heart from the very beginning, Thurston Reece Thompson is the quintessential awkward teenager, alone and confused and might be falling in love, and his best friend is gone. His single mother Andie MacDowell is in constant fear of keeping her kids safe. The other characters should be able to handle themselves just fine. These are the best written characters I have ever seen in a high school film and yes, I have seen "Election" .Mr. A is looking for motivation, Thurston is looking for love, and Caroline is just looking for something. This film takes those simple longings and puts them into something that looks and feels like a thriller. Originality is not to be feared. It should not be weird or off-putting; it should be celebrated. "Daydream Nation" is an edge-of-your-seat coming-of-age drama. These teenagers, plus a teacher or two, are just looking for love, acceptance, understanding and a purpose.For the first time in a long time, I had no idea where a film was taking me. I had no idea what they were trying to tell me, and I had no idea what genre it was supposed to be. But the unrelenting atmosphere, the incredibly well written characters, and the smart dialogue make "Daydream Nation" something you'll want to experience. Another reviewer compared this to "Juno", I was thinking of comparing this to "Heathers", but these filmmakers have their fingers on the pulse of something entirely different. They might play with your heart strings, and your blood pressure, but by the end you will be put back together.
I saw this movie as a screener that my boss received I work at a production company here in Los Angeles . It was the biggest surprise I've had so far this year: the movie was funny, sexy, romantic, and much much more weird than I would have guessed. The movie is all about Kat Dennings' character and what it's like to be a teen in a new town, at a new school, when it feels like the whole world is about to end at any moment. To this end, there's a huge fire burning just outside the town, and kids keep going missing. As if to distract herself from the hysteria Kat Dennings <more>
begins an affair with her teacher Josh Lucas, looking great btw and things go a little crazy and awkward and funny from there. Overall I really liked this movie and I thought it was refreshing -- dark, but not too dark; funny, but not the usual teen fart-joke humor.
This movie is wonderful. I just saw it at the Toronto International Film Festival, and it's great. Written and directed by a young, first time, Canadian director although you would never guess that and shot out in a small town in BC. The film is about a teenage girl, Caroline the beautiful Kat Dennings , who moves to a painfully small town which she hates. There, she observes her fellow high school students get wasted on drugs out of boredom, and people obsess over a serial killer who has yet to be caught. She becomes involved in 2 very different relationships with men, out of boredom, <more>
and the rest of the film explores the insecurities that everyone, young and old, experiences in life. It is beautifully shot, with dreamlike cinematography, and has a great balance of both sadness and humour which reflects everyday life.
Whoa movie, you are sort of a hot mess! But I loved you for your style and your funny dialogue and the way you made me feel dirty and innocent at the same time. The acting was mainly very strong. But Kat, you should try to emote just a little more. However. I respect that you let yourself be such a bitch, and then opened up and made me feel for you. For awhile there you worried me, but you redeemed yourself nicely. Josh Lucas, anytime, anywhere, I'm yours. Blonde hair or not. Reece Thompson, I don't know who you are, but you have promise. In fact, I'd say you were the highlight <more>
here not counting Josh Lucas's abs . In summary, I'm giving this movie a solid 8/10. Next time clean up your act a little and I'll give you an A plus.
Really unique great coming of age film (by HighDefDiscNews)
This Mike Goldbach guy really has my attention now as writer and director.I can see why folks are comparing both the director and film to a mix of Richard Kelly meets David Lynch.Kat Dennings is great as always and so is her co-star Reece Thompson.The story could be a bit controversial at times for some folks but I found it to be an overall really impressive, moving film.There's even some great references to other films that seem to have inspired the writer / director Mike Goldbach.It's worth mentioning that this film is getting a limited theatrical run starting in NYC and Los Angeles <more>
on May 6th.The film will be released shortly after that on both Blu-ray Disc and DVD by Anchor Bay a Starz company come May 17th.