12 and Holding (2005)

R   |    |  Drama


12 and Holding (2005) Poster

After his twin brother is accidentally killed by vengeful bullies, a 12-year old boy and his friends face the harsh realities of death, teenage hormones, and family dysfunction.


7.5/10
6,646

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  • Annabella Sciorra and Jeremy Renner in 12 and Holding (2005)
  • Conor Donovan in 12 and Holding (2005)
  • Annabella Sciorra and Zoe Weizenbaum in 12 and Holding (2005)
  • Jayne Atkinson and Linus Roache in 12 and Holding (2005)
  • Jeremy Renner in 12 and Holding (2005)
  • 12 and Holding (2005)

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30 October 2006 | WriterDave
8
| Profound and Perplexing
Michael Cuesta (who previously directed the slick and grotesquely controversial "L.I.E" and is currently one of the masterminds behind Showtime's wildly entertaining and grotesque "Dexter") treads some very dangerous ground with "Twelve and Holding." Working with a solid script focusing on how three best friends cope with the accidental death of another friend (the more popular twin brother of one of the protagonists), he presents pre-adolescent characters with the psychologically complex motives of adults and we witness their pratfalls, tragedies, and heart wrenching moments in a the same type of voyeuristic manner usually reserved for more mature characters and audiences. Elements of classics like "Stand by Me" keep the film grounded even as some of the plot developments get a bit far-fetched.

The acting is a huge plus here, with Annabella Sciora (getting more and more enchanting and beautiful with age), Jayne Atkinson (brutal, honest, and gut-wrenching as the grieving mother of the dead child), and Connor Donovan (in duel leads as the dead boy and his conflicted twin brother) highlighting the excellent ensemble. Cuesta's surprisingly subtle direction somehow manages to avoid both the salacious tendencies of a Larry Clark film and the annoyingly overt quirkiness of similarly themed films like "Me and You and Everyone we Know" to deliver a profound and perplexing tale of coming-of-age, revenge and loneliness.

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