There is a lot more to Booksmart than it just being a female version of the typical end of High School years romp. It has a big heart and a big brain and it marks the exceptionally strong directorial debut of Olivia Wilde. She delivers a work that will resonate strongly with females but includes much to admire for men as well.
Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) and Molly (Beanie Feldstein) are besties who are about to graduate from High School. They’ve buried their heads in books for too long and are beginning to feel that they might have missed things along the way. Fun things. They decide to cram three years of misbehaving into one last night before graduation with hilarious results.
They share a friendship based on honesty and respect and their banter is utterly modern and comically uninhibited. They support each other and see things of depth and value with each other where their fellow students only see the surface details. It’s to the strength of the script and Wilde’s sure hand that you get caught up with their plight completely.
There is such a satisfying sense of naivety mixed with intelligence with Amy and Molly and it defies the one dimension characters that usually inhabit movies of this genre. Booksmart is full of uncertainty, laughter, awkwardness, bravery and more than a touch of the bittersweet, it’s just like one remembers high school, only better, much better.