Very Good Girls, written and directed by Naomi Foner (A Dangerous Woman) is a coming of age story between two best friends dealing with your typical issues of teenage angst and self-discovery.
The story takes place in the girl’s final summer of High School, where the pair forms a pact to lose their virginity before they leave for University, while also dealing with the issues they each experience with their very different families. Ultimately drawing closer to each other through these very differences.
Lily (Dakota Fanning) comes from a home with wealthy parents, her parents (Ellen Barkin & Clark Gregg) live past each other with her mother harboring a slight drinking problem and her father a doctor that has a little too much time for his his patients which drives a wedge in the family, leaving Lily having to deal with the family issues, ultimately coming across as the adult of the household and having to look out for her younger siblings.
Now we have Gerri (Elizabeth Olsen) with a family set up on the complete opposite of the spectrum. Her parents, played by Demi Moore and Richard Dryfuss are very involved with their kids’ lives and have a rich warm relationship with each other. The thing is that Gerri is often left embarrassed by her family’s openness with each other, especially her father.
Despite these differences the girls have developed a rich and honest relationship with each other and decide that they need to lose their innocence before the end of the summer. They both meet a talented young street artist (Boyd Holbrook) at his day job of selling ice creams, where he immediately gets the attention of Gerri through his wiles of being a broody bastard, though it seems that at the same time he is taking notice of Lily.
From this point the movie follows the three young lovers in their pursuit of love with each other, with Gerri trying to win over the young artist and he trying his best to win over the lovely Lily.
The movie moves along at a slow pace which is fine for the story that Foner is trying to tell, and while the characters are at times charming and interesting, you can find yourself losing interest. Although rich with acting talent, the story, though not unheard of before, still has enough to make a good film for young teens to relate to and more importantly enjoy, especially using the acting power available.
Sadly for me Very Good Girls was just not that good. Yes the performances are good, particularly from Fanning and Olsen, Dryfuss also delivers a solid performance, but ultimately it is barely enough to keep you focused and interested.
Who would enjoy this movie? Mostly teenage girls, although I fear it might still not be captivating enough for them. Young teen boys with a crush on Dakota Fanning maybe might also get a kick out of the skinny dipping scene at the beginning of the movie but that’s most probably where any interest in the movie will end.
There are no bonus features available on the DVD and the movie is available to rent or purchase now at your nearest outlet.
Last Updated: December 3, 2015