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      Puberty Blues

      R 1981 1h 27m Comedy Drama List
      Reviews 65% Audience Score 500+ Ratings Two Australian teenage girls (Nell Schofield, Jad Capelja) try to join the cool surfing crowd. Read More Read Less

      Critics Reviews

      View All (4) Critics Reviews
      Yardena Arar Associated Press Puberty Blues stands out... on several counts. For one thing, it focuses on girls. For another, its handling of sexual initiation is realistic in welcome contrast to the raunchy comedy-glamour-fantasy treatment sex is given in other summer offerings. Oct 23, 2018 Full Review Camille Kittrell Sojourner Unfortunately, the barbarous uncouthness of the males becomes the most striking feature of the film rather than the girls' liberation from them. Aug 20, 2019 Full Review Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com Rated: 2/5 Jul 25, 2005 Full Review Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat Spirituality & Practice Examines the quest of popularity by teenagers as proof of self-worth Jul 23, 2003 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

      View All (64) audience reviews
      stephen p Touching, realistic coming of age drama, with the pain and joy of being that age. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review Audience Member An Aussie film of growing up by the beach as a youngster and the associated dramas of what it’s like to be a teen. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/19/20 Full Review Audience Member Iconic Australian film about growing up and the highs & lows that happen. It's poorly acted here and there but the content is good. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/21/23 Full Review Audience Member Good story, shit acting. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review Audience Member A popular Australian film with Bruce Beresford as director, Puberty Blues sounded like an interesting piece of cinematic nostalgia. Puberty Blues reminded me a lot of the 1995 movie Kids in how it depicts the raw nature of sexual experimentation, sex and drugs that younger crowds are going through. It steps up though because it is more narrative driven and character focused, although it is less sadistic. It's atmosphere is lighter and it has a touch of Aussie charm to it as well, so it is serious without being excessive. But either way, Puberty Blues does a good job confronting legitimate issues that plagued Australia's youth at a time where it was too ashamed to talk about it. Nowadays the issues from Puberty Blues are dealt with every night on the News and are significantly less confronting, so one of the main things which makes Puberty Blues a good film is the fact that it dealt with so much controversial material back in 1981. Viewing it in the original time of the film would have been a somewhat shocking experience, but seeing it now remains interesting for the same reasons as well as for its nostalgic value. From a contemporary perspective, it is clear that much of the impact of Puberty Blues would be lesser today than it would back in its day, but many of the dramatic elements remain effective due to the fact that they are painfully relevant. Puberty Blues deals with serious issues along the lines of teenage sex, drug use, gender segregation and social status. It deals with the fim from a female perspective to tackle serious issues without ever seeming like a piece of propaganda or being one sided. Bruce Beresford manages to handle the material of the film very nicely as director because although the script Margaret Kelly hands him omits many of the key themes from the original source novel, it still maintains a lot of the story's edge and ambition which he transfers to the screen directly. His directorial work ensures that the film comes off as stylish while he pumps the film with an atmosphere which is strong without being anything but organic. It really felt like a natural film, and although it may have not maintained the most in terms of story, it made up for edge and subject matter. Referring back to what I said earlier about Puberty Blues being like Kids, it is a film about subject matter more than story or characters. It does have some sympathetic characters just as easily as it has some detestable ones, and viewers are a lot more likely to connect to Puberty Blues than Kids since this film seems to have real heart to it. But as a whole, there is something distant or empty about the film as a result of this. It doesn't make it a bad movie, it makes it a different kind of experience as a film akin to Kids but less hard hitting and more narrative driven. Outside of its subject matter, Puberty Blues also touches upon Australian culture to a certain extent by comparing social classes and hilighting what is considered popular and what isn't. There are many themes and topics that are covered by Puberty Blues which are done in an honest fashion, and Bruce Beresford's direct way of handling the material is very respectable. In the end, he manages to craft a film which works as both a wake up call for teenagers, parents and particularly females who are coming of age and a legitimate narrative feature. From a stylish perspective, Puberty Blues has no trouble succeeding. The Australian scenery is beautiful. One good thing about Puberty Blues is looking back at the popular Australian scene of the 1970's when surfing culture was in its heyday, and the setting for the film is captured really well thanks to beautifully colourful scenery which emphasises the energetic and free-spirited nature of the Australian youth. The scenery for the film is gorgeous, full of colour and life which makes the film a treat on the eyes. It is all captured with strong cinematography which always manages to capture the life of the scenery in the background to its central focus. The old look of all the Australian buildings, interiors and pop culture works as an interesting trip through time. And the cast of Puberty Blues do their part as well. All the actors maintain a distinct Aussie charm, but Nell Schofield remains the most memorable of the bunch. Nell Schofield makes a great lead in the role of Debbie. Serving as the main character in Puberty Blues, Nell Schofield takes on a large responsibility which she easily steps up to. For an actress who remains relatively unknown to this day, Nell Schofield did a great job establishing the female outcast archetype of Australian teenage culture in 1981. She develops well over the course of the story because while she begins the film as an agressive yet more introverted girl, she is able to still maintain that as she branches out into being associated with the Greenhill Gang. Her performance always maintains a sense of realistic subtlety and restraint which prevents her from going into melodramatic material and it works because it plays at some of the most simple elements of the character. She makes an honest character out of Debbie and doesn't hold back anything unnecesarrily while maintaining the ability to interact with the many other characters in the film easily. Nell Schofield makes a devent everyman out of Debbie and deals with the material in a realistic fashion without having to resort to stereotypical character elements. So although Puberty Blues is more about subject matter than story, it is an edgy and harshly realistic examination of issues plaguing teenagers bolstered by strong directorial work from Bruce Beresford. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/27/23 Full Review Audience Member I didn't hate this movie at all and found it to have a charm to it. The two main female leads aren't the most conventionally pretty girls in this whole movie but I think they were good looking enough to hold a scene or two. The movie follows two girls through all the trials and tribulations of teen age life in suburban Australia during the early 80s. This movie really felt to me like a mix of Fast Times At Ridgemont High,Little Darlings and Kids from 1995,but a less graphic version. This shows the reality of teen age girls and all the crap they have to go through to fit in then find out its not worth all the trouble. There were very awkward parts in this but that's what gave it the certain level of charm. Its not a horrible movie by any means but it doesn't make you want to watch it again anytime soon. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

      Cast & Crew

      Movie Info

      Synopsis Two Australian teenage girls (Nell Schofield, Jad Capelja) try to join the cool surfing crowd.
      Director
      Bruce Beresford
      Production Co
      Limelight Productions
      Rating
      R
      Genre
      Comedy, Drama
      Original Language
      English
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Jul 5, 2018
      Runtime
      1h 27m