Sundance Standout Eighth Grade Hurts In The Best Ways

Eighth Grade, one of Sundance's buzziest movies now has a trailer — now, us non-Sundance-going public individuals get a feel of the film. The movie is partially buzzy because of its director, Bo Burnham, who was one of the first YouTube sensations. It's also got a Lady Bird-like appeal: It depicts adolescence deeply rooted in a single era. For Lady Bird, that era was 2002. For Eighth Grade, it's 2018.
The movie follows Kayla (Elsie Fisher), an eighth grader eager to get to high school where, ideally, life won't be so fraught. (For those of us who've lived it, sorry Kayla, it will be.) She's a burgeoning vlogger. On her vlogs, she is confessional, confident, and kind.
"The topic of today's video is being yourself," Kayla says in a video featured in the trailer. "Being yourself can be hard, and it's like, aren't I always being myself?"
In school, though, Kayla is quiet and fearful of the judgement of her peers.
"Maybe you should put yourself out there a little," her father (Josh Hamilton) suggests.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter at Sundance, Burnham said the movie is about the weight of tiny — almost imperceptible — violence can be, especially during your formative years
"It's a story about how intense small things are," he said. "How aggressive micro things are."
Note: Eighth Grade isn't a melodrama in terms of plot. Burnham explained that the movie doesn't "elevate" the plot to the point that it's unbelievable.
"A regular day to an eighth grader feels like life and death, so can we take a regular day and make it feel like life and death?" Burnham said of making the movie. In conclusion, Eighth Grade isn't a teen drama, it's a horror film.
Eighth Grade will arrive in theaters this July. Watch the full trailer, below.
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