Short Term 12 – Review
Short Term 12" is a film told through the eyes of a character named Grace (Brie Larson), a twenty-something compassionate, passionate but tough supervisor at a facility for at-risk teenagers. Grace is a take charge caretaker of the kids at the facility and is also in love with her long-term kindhearted boyfriend who is also a co-worker named Mason (John Gallagher Jr.).
What we realize early in the film is that it is no coincidence that Grace has chosen to work with these fragile and torment kids, as we find that she is dealing silently with some difficult issues from her own past that are way too emotionally raw for her to talk about with others.
Midway through the film Grace’s is confronted by surprising events that reminds her of the past causing her to spiral into deep confusion and detachment from professional life, her relationship with Mason and the teens she is charged to care for. Things get even more difficult and are made all the more sharper for Grace with the arrival of a young girl named Jayden at the facility who is highly gifted but is very troubled with her risky behavior, insubordination and unruly demeanor. But unlike the other teens there Grace eventually discovers that she and Jayden are making a connection that seems to help them both in a mutually beneficial way to open up about there past.
Short Term 12 is a small but very complex film that has upfront honesty in its story telling. Dealing with teens in the plot with fragile and respectful care who wake up each day with the emotional pain from their past as a daily part of their present. This fabulous little film manages with great gentleness and realism to convey the stories of these teen with moment to moment truth, with a bit of appropriate humor and with lots of love, sometimes unrequited love, sometimes love in the most unexpected of places from the most unexpected people.
3 – 3/4 Stars