I bore witness to yet another little beauty from the International Film Festival on Sunday evening, The Spectacular Now.
In the very first scene, Sutter Keeley is attempting to answer an abstract question in his college application about challenges he has overcome. In the very last scene, he is doing the exact same thing; the only difference being the way in which he answers the question. What happens in between is the story of his transformation from a reckless party boy to an ambitious young man. Thanks to a chance encounter with a girl in his neighbourhood, Aimee Finnickey, Sutter gradually turns his life around, though not without a few bumps along the way.
With their raw and often improvisational performances, it’s not surprising that Miles Teller (Sutter) and Shailenne Woodley (Aimee) both won acting prizes at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, where the film similarly garnered overwhelmingly positive reviews.