Starring: Leah Lewis, Daniel Diemer, Alexxis Lemire Produced by: Anthony Bregman, M. Blair Breard, Anton Sanko Music Cinematography: Greta Zozula
Today, Alice Wu has been the main playwright in our continuous sery of Lockdown Reviews, with Leah Lewis, Daniel Lemire and Alexxis Lemire in lead roles. Alice Wu’s The Half of It is the first one in a romantic teenage playwright. It streams on Netflix at the present time.
About which is the story?
Ellie Chu (Leah Lewis) is a clever young girl from a Chinese family immigrant who studies at a rural school in the USA. Although her father is an engineer, his lack of communication skills , particularly in English, is a major obstacle and his family is left to live in the small town, where nothing is true. While Ellie is a clever young girl, she is an introvert with few friends. She earns pocket money by filling out her classmates ‘ assignments and she does not attempt to engage in talks. One day, the American football player Paul Munsky (Daniel Diemer) approached her with the school jock, wanting Ellie ‘s help in confessing her love to his classmate Aster flores (Alexxis Lemire). While Ellie reluctantly agrees to assist Paul, she realizes slowly that she also loves Aster. The rest is about how Ellie and Paul are trying to navigate their friendship and how she has sex and love for Aster.
What is good? What is good?
The Half Of It is based on Cyrano de Bergerac, the French play that is also the basis of Srinivas Avasarala’s Oohalu Gusagusalaade with Naga Shaurya and Raashi Khanna. The style is similar to that of the French play. But rather than considering The Half Of It as a triangular love stories, moviemaker Alice Wu turns it into a warming drama in which the leading actor explores her identity, the bond she has to her father. She is often tormented and called all kinds of names as the only Chinese girl in town, however Ellie learns to live with it. Her English teacher at the school is the only one that encourages her to apply for college to help her dream greatly and leave the city, but Ellie doesn’t know whether she wants to put her dad behind. So everything begins to change when she strikes an unlikely friendship with Paul. Ellie slowly changes her own sentiments for Aster, and finally she understands how love is able to transform people. The film explored all these aspects beautifully, and Alice Wu looks at all these aspects very well. One of the film’s best parts is the conversations between Paul and Ellie, apart from the way she develops her own bond with her father over time.
What is bad? What is bad?
The movie also reflects the slow pace of life around the characters, since the story is set in a small city. Sometimes, nothing actually occurs in the movie, as conversations and incidents focus largely on two or three personages. Although Ellie Chu and Paul’s characteristics are well written, the film gives the impression as well that Aster doesn’t have the time to watch as much as she deserves.
Final Word: The Half Of It surprisingly warmth and captures the experience of the immigrant and her anxieties, small joys, ups and downs quite well in an independent film about a Chinese girl living in the US. Although the narrative of the film feels very familiar from the start, beauty lies in the writing of Ellie Chu ‘s character and Leah Lewis ‘ marvelous leading role. Alice Wu, the writer and director, takes her leading character, Ellie Chu along a journey of self – discovery, which makes all the difference. The Half Of It is a good – hearted movie and a welcome change in the genre of teenagers in high school.