Thanks to this movie, you can start praising it before the year-end lists drop and then say “I told you so”.
Are you there god? it’s me margaret… what can one say? This is a beautiful, very beautiful movie. One of the best movies I’ve seen so far in 2023. When the year ends, it seems certain that it will be on the “best movies of the year” lists. The production will not return empty-handed from the award ceremonies. The story of 11-year-old Margaret is warm, fun and sincere.
Adapted from Judy Blume’s 1970 novel of the same name, the film is a project whose script was written by author Blume and the director of the film, Kelly Fremon Craig. The production, which is director Craig’s second feature film, tells the story of a young girl (this time at a younger age) trying to cope with the signs of socialization and growth in the transition to adolescence, just like in the director’s first film. I can describe the movie as follows; It’s better than Licorice Pizza, produced by Paul Thomas Anderson, one of last year’s quality productions. because it is more concrete, more entertaining and more sincere than that movie.
Let’s write the rest of the article under the title of spoiler since it contains details about the story;
Warning: Contains spoilers beyond this point.
No matter where the child in question lives, “moving” is always a cause for distress for children. Your house and room will change, your neighborhood will change, your school will change, and most importantly, even your circle of friends will “necessarily” change. We all know very well that the bonds of friendship established with a child’s heart are unlike anything else. You think that you will remain friends with the person you were friends with at that time until you die. Therefore, having to leave is a heartbreaking experience for every child. Like little Chihiro in the great master Hayao Miyazaki’s 2001 masterpiece Spirited Away, Margaret is in a similar unhappiness.
11-year-old Margaret, who has to move from New York to New Jersey due to her father’s job, becomes friends with Nancy, who breaks into her new house. Margaret, who also met Nancy’s brother and whose heart fluttered towards him, has a different habit. Margaret does not keep a diary, instead of keeping a diary, she talks to God about whatever she experienced that day and pours out her inner thoughts to God. He realizes this as a dialogue and thinks that God is listening to him. Therefore, we understand Margaret’s feelings in every event she experiences not only through her facial expressions and gestures, but also through her daily God monologue.
Speaking of keeping a diary, let’s remember the 2001 movie Bridget Jones’s Diary. The diary kept by adult Bridget was very popular at the time, especially among female audiences. Margaret in this movie is like Bridget Jones entering puberty. Of course, as an adult woman, Bridget has to deal with bigger problems.
Margaret, the only child of a Jewish father and a Christian mother, is caught between these two religions. She sometimes participates in religious rituals in the Jewish synagogue and sometimes sings with Christians in the chapel. However, she is undecided about which of the two religions she should choose. Since his family leaves the choice up to him, he does not confide in his family about his choice of religion. When a child tries to find the religion he thinks he belongs to, we immediately think of Ang Lee’s 2012 movie, Life of Pi. In that movie, Pi tries to feel like he belongs to a culture and strives for this throughout the movie.
Margaret joins a group led by Nancy, her first new friend in her neighborhood, where they talk about secret things. 4 teenage girls talk all about puberty. such as breast enlargement exercises, wearing a bra, first menstrual experience and men’s genitals. I also laughed a lot when one of the elders of the family compared the smell of menstrual blood to a “chin-up bar” 🙂
Upon the invitation of a not-so-liked boy in their class, four girlfriends go to his house, dressed up in an extravagant way, and experience their first excitement with the games they play there. Spin the bottle and 2 minutes games in the toilet will result in girls having their first kissing experience with the opposite sex. (The resemblance of the young actor Zach Brooks in this scene to Edward Furlong, the child star of Terminator 2, is quite surprising.)
The breaking point of the film is that Margaret, who is very attached to her grandmother, wants to meet with her maternal elders after the speech of her valuable teacher who opened her horizons. Because as a result of Margaret’s insistence on her mother, we understand that the reason why they do not meet is not the distance, but that their grandfather and grandmother do not want a Jewish son-in-law and grandchild. The scene where little Margaret had to meet two families in their own home and eat together was magnificent. The last thing a girl should do is fight over religion. “You are a Jewish girl!”, “No! How can a person whose mother is a Christian be a Jew?” Margaret, who gave the best answer to all the big people, was literally giving them life lessons in this scene.
It was very emotional when Margaret, who learned that many women in her family started menstruating at a relatively late age and was afraid that she would be too late, hugged her mother with joy when she suddenly saw the color in the toilet at the end of the movie. It was a perfect ending to the movie, when the young rookie girl, Margaret, who realized that she was in an unnecessary rush, received an answer from the god she called out to and thanked him at the end of the movie.
In the movie, I watched with my mouth open as Rachel Mcadams played the mother Barbara, who couldn’t say no to anyone at first and then learned to say no. Mcadams, who literally offers us an acting recital, will definitely receive awards and nominations with this film. Kathy Bates, who plays the grandmother, is already a very experienced and Oscar-winning actress. This movie does not surprise either. The young actress Abby Ryder Fortson is also very successful in the role of Margaret, which is positioned at the center of the film. We can say that a good career awaits Abby. In addition, the film winks at the Oscars in adapted screenplay and many other important categories. With this film, director Craig will be on the list of “directors whose works should be followed”.
Are you there god? it’s me margaret ; It is a very successful movie with its reasonable duration and drama delivered in the right dosage. I recommend this beautiful film, which is decorated with quality acting and stands out with its naturalness, not only to female viewers but to all cinema lovers who love to watch quality movies.