Meg (Agnes Bruckner) is a high school girl that's having a lot of problems at home. Her parents are divorced, she never sees her dad. Her mom works nonstop, her little sister is depressed to the point where she's self harming and has stopped eating. Meg channels all of this through poetry in her AP English class. Her teacher, Mr. Auster (David Strathairn) takes an interest in her and encourages her to enter a poetry contest.
Bruckner is an actress who I'm always shocked hasn't gotten bigger. She's the lead in one of my favorite films, Dreamland, and her performance in this film is incredible. This is a very hard drama. Nothing good actually happens to poor Meg until the very end, and that's less of a "good" and more of an acceptance. Strathairn was great here as well, even though the scenes of Mr. Auster getting closer to Meg are wildly uncomfortable to watch.
It's hard to sell a "downer" movie to people. But the story here is so rich. Considering this was shot for next to nothing, then edited on an early 2000's version of Final Cut Pro, it looks pretty good. I'll still hold out hope for Bruckner to get more mainstream roles.
Memorable Quote: "Lily, you don't need wings." - Meg (Agnes Bruckner)