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Parents' Guide to

Just Say Goodbye

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Unpolished but heartfelt indie about the impact of suicide.

Movie NR 2019 106 minutes
Just Say Goodbye Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

Though it first feels like a low-budget after-school special, this indie drama quickly shows that it's heartfelt, caring deeply about its characters' feelings. Certainly Just Say Goodbye has its awkward, predictable moments, especially in the beginning, as it sets up themes of alcoholism, school bullying, and suicide -- with all the expected images and ideas. But it's not long before the genuine performances by MacKenzie and Eichenberger begin to resonate. They, and the movie, follow an organic flow of character.

In one scene, Sarah tries to seduce Jesse, to sleep with him if he'll promise not to go through with his plans. The ploy quickly fails, yet the teens are wise enough to explore their feelings around the situation. Rather than a major turning point in the plot, it comes across as just a hiccup in their friendship, a sublime character-building moment. Just Say Goodbye falters more when it actually does employ traditional screenwriting-school plot turns, but not enough to sink the movie. The ending may be surprising, and it will be up to parents to decide whether it sends the right message to teens.

Movie Details

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