Parents' Guide to

Evergreen

By Nell Minow, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Thought-provoking film about social class; teens+.

Movie PG-13 2004 87 minutes
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Is It Any Good?

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Writer/director Enid Zentelis says that she wanted to create real characters dealing with dire poverty without overly romanticizing them or portraying them as idiots or addicts, and she succeeds. The movie's greatest strength is that all of her characters on both sides of the economic spectrum are sensitively handled and beautifully portrayed. Zentelis also uses the settings effectively to tell the story, visually and metaphorically. Both Henri's and Chat's mother do not want to leave the house; one as a sort of comfortable prison, one as a destination, but both as a kind of hide-out.

The script is sometimes awkward and over-reaching, but it is helped a great deal by the natural but sensitive performances, especially Gary Farmer as a man who befriends Kate and Henri. When he says, "I know who I am and I know who you are," it is wise, moving, and romantic.

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