Somewhere in the Middle: Edge of Seventeen

Perhaps unfairly, Kelly Fremon Craig's directorial debut drew a lot of comparison to the excellent Lady Bird, but even on its own merits it fails to transcend the tropes of a standard coming of age movie. Craig is a disciple of John Hughes, which works to the advantage of the movie, but the script also feels a little tired and very much like something we've seen before. The teen movie stock characters are given the advantage of being portrayed with great performances, especially with Hailee Steinfeld as Nadine, who manages to being the material to an above average level. Edge of Seventeen has its moments of fun, but often misses the mark (Nadine's awkward attempt at a hookup in a car failed to land as emotional or funny). Ultimately the performances rescue the film and make it watchable, indicating an actor's director that perhaps needs some work in the the story department.