The best indie movies give you the feeling that their directors not only wanted but needed to make them. That’s certainly true of Destin Daniel Cretton’s Short Term 12, a drama of astonishing emotional purity that has the novel setting of a group foster home. It’s about a crew of teenagers, deeply troubled and out of sorts, who live in drab institutional rooms and try to patch their community of fellow foster children into a makeshift family. The situation has a built-in heartbreak, but Cretton doesn’t milk it. Instead, he lets each character strike a note of lived-in reality that is rarely found on screen. Short Term 12 lures you into passion and trauma: the staggeringly hopeless diary-of-a-lost-boy rap performed by Marcus (Keith Stanfield), the moodiest and most brilliant of the kids, or the journey from self-mutilation to shaky redemption undergone by Jayden (Kaitlyn Dever), who masks her innocence in attitude. The home is run by counselors who are former foster children themselves. Brie Larson, as the caring but tormented Grace (who’s pregnant and doesn’t know if she has the faith to have her baby), and John Gallagher Jr., as her gentle-dweeb fellow worker Mason (who fears his love can’t save her), show you what emotionally naked acting is all about. A
SHORT TERM PARKING This fantastic indie drama about foster kids strikes a great balance between inevitable sadness and family happiness (Brett Pawlak)
Genre: Drama; Starring: John Gallagher Jr., Brie Larson; Director: Destin Cretton; Release Date Limited: 08/23/2013; Runtime (in minutes): 96; MPAA Rating: R; Distributor: Cinedigm
Posted August 26 2013 — 12:00 AM EDT
- 5 best non-singles from Kanye West's 'Late Registration' on its 10th anniversary
- 'Supernatural': Jensen Ackles talks season 11's female big bad
- See the Foo Fighters rock out with Blues Traveler's John Popper
- Hootie explains how he got name-checked in 'Mo Money Mo Problems'
- 9 little-known facts about Rihanna's first album
- Faith-based drama in tight race with 'Straight Outta Compton' at box office
- Liam Payne turns 22! See his most GIF-able moments
- 'American Horror Story: Hotel' First Look: 11 EW exclusive photos
- 17 photos of people you forgot hung out at the VMAs
- 24 Movies With Great Opening Scenes
- 'Survivor: Cambodia—Second Chance' Cast Photos Revealed!
- Where is the cast of 'Can't Hardly Wait' now?
- Darius Rucker, Paris Hilton, Nick & Pharrell and More!