Friday, March 22, 2019

Blu-ray debut for Desiree Akhavan's THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST

A movie that was well-received at its debut at last year's Sundance Film Fest and later in the year when its had its limited theatrical run, THE MIS-EDUCATION OF CAMERON POST, directed and co-written by Desiree Akhavan
(shown below), didn't set the box-office on fire nearly as much as those who championed the film would have liked.

Now that a special edition of the movie has appeared on Blu-ray, home viewers will have further opportunity to judge for themselves. Although The M of CP, as we'll call it, is all about the increasingly outlawed practice of GLBT "conversion therapy" (it takes place in 1993) and we've already seen two other films on this subject within past year (the excellent based-on-fact narrative movie, Boy Erased and the unusual documentary The Sunday Sessions), this one easily finds it own special niche.

For one thing the protagonist here is female rather than male, as in the other two films, and Ms Akhavan's style is lower-key, generally resisting melodrama very well -- even in the one toward-the-end scene in which this is very nearly unavoidable. The filmmaker draws fine performances from her entire cast, many of whom will seem brand new to the viewer's eye.

Though lead actress Chloë Grace Moretz (above) and three supporting players -- Jennifer Ehle,(below, right), John Gallagher Jr. (below, left) and Sasha Lane -- are well-known, most of the other faces are fresh and new enough to make the film seem as close to documentary in feel as to narrative.

Ms Moretz, in particular, is such a fine actress (even in claptrap like the recent Suspiria remake) that she makes every tiny gesture and small thoughtful moment something you never question. She is so adept here at keeping her thoughts and feelings close to the vest, even as you realize how difficult is the position in which she has been placed, that you will find it hard to take your eyes off her.

When at last Cameron is able to truly bond with a couple of her co-prisoners -- Ms Lane (center, above) and the excellent American Indian actor Forrest Goodluck (above, left) -- this quiet, increasingly deeply-felt relationship binds the movie. As usual with these "conversion therapy" stories, religion plays a huge and pretty terrifying role. And though The M of CP doesn't make any of its characters out-and-out villains, if you're anything like me, you'll want to shove a pocket version of the Holy Bible down the throat of most of these faith-based idiots.

From FilmRise and running 91 minutes, The Miseducation of Cameron Post hit the street last week on Blu-ray, complete with Bonus Features -- for purchase and/or rental. According to the distributor, it will soon be available on VOD, as well.

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