Dave's Rating:

2.0

… like a warm bowl of Cream of Wheat.

Who's in It: Aaron Webber, Robert Joy, Rebecca Jenkins, Daniel MacIvor

The Basics: A 13-year-old boy who plays less like a human being than like a cautionary tale about hippie parenting techniques (Mom praises the kid's first wet dream as though he'd made doody in the toilet for the first time all by himself), gets way too sexually precocious with his middle-aged English teacher and inadvertently almost wrecks the poor guy's life. Repercussions? None.

What's the Deal? There is a certain style of Canadian filmmaking that cherishes niceness over all else. Characters are bland and polite and understated. Nothing too messy happens. It's like watching an old episode of DeGrassi Junior High minus the teen pregnancy. Even here, where you have the potentially incendiary combo of underage gay seducer and frustrated, lonely, public restroom-cruising English teacher, it all ends up feeling like a warm bowl of Cream of Wheat. Nice shout-out to German gay-teacher-and-his-favorite-public-toilets film Taxi Zum Klo, though.

Seriously, These Are Some Hippies: The dad earnestly asks the kid to masturbate more so they don't waste water resources washing his dream-befouled sheets over and over. They also take nude saunas as a family. Dad's business is composting. Mom's is home-schooling the kid and baking macrobiotic loaves of spelt bread. Their house is made of bales of hay or something, and the rest of their lives are made of hemp. You just want to smack them from the first reel and not stop until they fight back. But you know they never would.

Best Thing About It: Sympathetic to his character's pathetic behavior, Daniel MacIvor (who co-wrote the movie) is interesting to watch as the bummed teacher who seems to be the only person in the movie to grasp the implications of a reckless kid setting his sights on making out with an unwilling adult.

Cooler Canadian Filmmaking You Should Be Investigating: Start with David Cronenberg's The Brood and work your way through his entire body of work. Then hop on over to Guy Maddin's Tales From the Gimli Hospital and enjoy his nonstop romantic homage to silent film.

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