31 May 2016 | lizab-506-909170
Powerful, if somewhat flawed
Saw this movie by chance - was looking for something to watch, opened up Netflix, and it was on the main screen as a suggested title. With a cast of mostly unknowns, I wasn't expecting much. But I was surprised.
The acting was mostly very good. Lexi Ainsworth was very believable as the bullied Jessica. I cried along with her, as someone who was also bullied in high school. (To a lesser extent, and before cell phones and social media were really a thing yet.)
For the most part, the story was believable and moving. My only problem with it was that it reinforces the false assumption that bullies usually have a difficult home life. This was the kind of information that was generally believed to be true back when I was in school (graduated high school in 2002), but we know a lot more today. Most bullies come from good families and have good lives.
By the end of the film, I felt like we were supposed to feel a certain amount of sympathy for Avery. But despite how things were portrayed - her life was really not that bad at all. I felt that a lot of things were exaggerated.
Avery wasn't bullying Jessica because her parents fought sometimes and her mom was a little controlling, she was bullying Jessica because she was a cruel, mean, heartless, narcissistic brat. No one with a conscience could treat another person that way. Period. No sympathy for bullies.