Vivendi Visual Entertainment // 2010 // 88 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // July 28th, 2010
Go find yourself.
High School is coming to an end and a group of kids are sweating the next big decision: getting into their college of choice. At the forefront of all this angst is Taylor Rockefeller (Mae Whitman, Arrested Development), an introspective outsider who spends her school days wandering around grimacing. She thinks she may have found the campus for her, but to score enrollment she'll have to craft the perfect entrance essay and navigate the politics of the new Dean.
Meanwhile, Taylor's colleagues are having struggles of their own, whether
it's trying to crack the Harvard acceptance list or other hilarious shenanigans
like, say, self-mutilation, which is always good for a few laughs, right?
Wrong. Acceptance is a big, fat mess of a movie. I was completely lost watching this, unsure of whether it was supposed to be a comedy, a drama, or terrifying health class film. I don't think I've ever seen something as tonally confused as Acceptance.
While it has all the trappings of a screwball comedy, including a manic Joan Cusack, a playful score, goofy college mascots, and cartoonish villains, you'll also get jarring despair like Taylor's struggle with cutting herself. This particular plotline comes out of nowhere and completely alters the trajectory and feel of what had been happening, leaving me shocked, confused, and irritated. Pick a tone and stick with it.
The synopsis on the back of the case describes Acceptance as only back-of-the-case-synopses can:
"Acceptance is a fun and heartwarming tale which shows that true acceptance doesn't come from what's popular, it comes from what's within."
No, it's not. It's not fun or heartwarming. About that "from within" crap, yeah it might be in there, but frankly, I was so annoyed I didn't even notice.
Wafer-thin DVD: 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, 5.1 surround, no extras.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Vivendi Visual Entertainment
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
Running Time: 88 Minutes
Release Year: 2010
MPAA Rating: Not Rated