The First Time

Posted February 2, 2012 in ,

The First Time
Sundance Film Festival
Director: Jonathan Kasdan

It’s been a long time since a teenage film has come along that doesn’t dumb down the hardships of being an adolescent with fart jokes and dreadful drug-induced humor. Writer/director Jonathan Kasdan begins his teenage romantic comedy with a serendipitous encounter between Dave (Dylan O’Brien) and Aubrey (Brittany Robertson), who both appear to have significant others in their lives, but find an undiscovered spark in one another they can’t seem to ignore. As the two discuss music, movies and their plans beyond high school, Kasdan perfectly captures the nuances of today’s technologically advanced teenagers with the initially awkward “getting to know you” routine we’ve all been through to the monumental event of losing one’s virginity. O’Brien and Robertson are wonderful as they spit sharp-tongued dialogue from Kasdan’s script with faultless precision and create a charming connection for audiences to root for. Sure, the stereotypical casting of Dave’s friends, which include a womanizing Brit and a quiet, unless he’s about to deliver a key life lesson, token African-American footballer, is probably the biggest resemblance to what Kasdan would have developed had Hollywood producers been involved, but the filmmaker’s biggest achievement comes from the relatable material younger audiences will find themselves bonding to and the overall positive messages that form from the aftermath of teenage debacles.