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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Movie Review # 75 Growing OP (2008)

Release: 2008
Director: Michael Melski
Writer: Michael Melski
Steven Yaffee
Rachel Blanchard
Wallace Langham

Rotten Tomatoes: 59% Audience
IMDb: 6.1/10
Netflix: 3.6 Stars

Cliche? Predictable? Coming of age? These are all words or phrases that come to mind for Growing OP. As it follows a strong line of other movies in context and presentation. Like American Beauty, Brokeback Mountain and Chasing 3000. With a central character growing and becoming the man or the woman they are. But what set's this apart from those is the story of Quinn.

The main character of the film. Quinn wants nothing to be like his family. Who all are pot growing, pot smoking hippies who are against the moral compass of society. Where he just wants to fit in and be normal and not the outcast that his family loves to be so much. Which is also the downfall of his family. As his blind love leads to their ultimate demise in the end and his true calling as well.

It is a full circle movie he grows up detesting pot and everything about it. Family get's busted and the he retains the legacy of growing the pot. That point was so obvious that it was nauseating. At the same time it was sentimental and heartfelt. But overly predictable. Just like the rest of the film.  Especially the family of his one true love Crystal Conners. Who where so over the top and screamed cops.

Just no one caught on. Especially when they forbid the young lovers from going up stairs by barricading the stairs with paint buckets. Talk about overkill and silliness. But for evey moment like this their are others. That make up for it. Like how the social network in high school is based on perception. Not who you are just how you are perceived. And seeing that Quinn was home schooled his entire life. Then in one moment wanting to go because of Crystal lead to many fall outs.

Not only with the people at his school but also with his anti-normality family. As his sister get's on to him for stealing her business and possibly destroying her weed selling. Which her father disapproves of because she sells all his cast offs. But to her it is all about money and not giving the premium weed to a bunch of dumb high schoolers. To his mom talking his father into letting Crystal into the house and telling him weed should not take precedent over Hope and Quinn.

All of these I can see playing out in certain households that might have this business. Hell I can see it happening in any family business. As the kids do not want to be their parents and set off to be their own person. Which did add a sense of believability to this movie. Just not enough though as with each passing scene the tiresome portrayal of suburbia and high school. Does wear on you and it does bore you.

Which I would say that happened about 30 minutes into the movie and continued for another 40 minutes. After that though the last 20 minutes not only fly they are the most exiting in the film. As the family is arrested and Quinn becomes his father all over in college. It is just making it to that point that is the hard part. As this movie will drive away people. Because of how slow and lethargic the middle is.

Which is where 90% of my complaints come in. But it is not enough to completely wash your hands of this movie. As it does have decently good characters even if they are cliche. A great cast and seeing all the pot and love of the pot that the father has. Is totally worth seeing. But as far as stone movies go this is a bust upon busts as it is more a social family drama. Than your typical stoner film like Pineapple Express or Up in Smoke.

So if that is what you think this might be. You will be disappointed and pissed off. If you want a movie that is more like a coming of age with pot? Then this is your kind of movie. Outside of those two camps I can not think of anyone else who might enjoy it. But who knows you just might.

My Rating: 3.75/5 Stars

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