12 and Holding is a compelling insight into the complexities of children losing their innocence and adults struggling to guide them. In the suburbs of America, three close knit 12-year-olds - introverted Jacob, precocious Malee and vulnerable Leonard -- start down the path of self-discovery and begin to distinguish their own voices from those of their parents. Sparked by the tragic death of Jacob's twin brother, the trio band together as they grapple with feelings of revenge, the burden of grief and the indelible experiences of growing up. Stand By Me for the next generation, this is unmissable viewing.
Brilliant and haunting.
- 12 and Holding review by Shatner's Bassoon
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12 And Holding revolves around the lives of four 12 year old children who live in the quiet suburbs of New Jersey. Rudy and Jacob are identical twins though by personality are complete opposites. Rudy is self-confident, confrontational and extrovert, though Jacob, (partly due to a facial birthmark), is quiet, shy and introvert. The twins' two friends are Malee, a bright and articulate daughter of a local psychiatrist and Leonard an overweight child whose life revolves around food. When Rudy is killed in a horrific prank that goes wrong, the film then splits into three paths following the separate lives of each child. As in Director Michael Cuesta's previous film, 'L.I.E' the story looks at kids who are mature beyond their years, conflicted and painfully lonely. The writing as well as the acting is superb. The young cast give remarkably mature performances and director Michael Cuesta skilfully pulls you in by portraying real people in real situations only telling you what you need to know, and making you care for each of the films main characters. And like Cuesta's previous film, 'L.I.E' the story comes to end far too soon, not tying up all the loose ends, not giving you complete closure, and as a viewer leaving you wanting more. Thinking about how the children's lives would have continued is something that'll sit in the back of your mind and haunt you for days later. If you liked low key character based indie films like 'L.I.E', 'Junebug', 'Somersault', 'Me and You and Everyone We Know' or 'The Station Agent' then '12 And Holding' is a film which you shouldn't miss