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I recently went and saw the movie Booksmart and I could not possibly more highly recommend it. It’s actress Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut and it stars Kaitlyn Dever as Amy and Beanie Feldstein (yes, like from Lady Bird!) as Molly.
Amy and Molly are best, tight-as-could-be, parents-mistake-them-for-lesbian-lovers (Amy is actually gay, Molly isn’t) kind of friends, and the story takes place over the last day and night of school. Molly is valedictorian of her high school class and Amy is salutatorian, so they both worked very hard in school, to the detriment of any non school related activities.
The plot, while intricate and hilarious, is less of my focus here, but I’ll briefly summarize it. Molly is horrified to, on her last day, find out that a lot of the party kids are also going to Ivy League schools (she’s attending Yale). They did so without sacrificing their social life, like Molly and Amy (who’s attending Columbia) did. So Molly decides that she wants to attend an end of year banger of a party at some kid’s house, with Amy. The rest of the night is filled with shenanigans as they run around town trying to find the party. We see a (almost?) lesbian sex scene, we see (hear, rather) the girls seeing pornography in front of their principal, we witness some beautifully shot scenes, like an underwater pool sequence that’s absolutely breathtaking (get it?). Finally, the girls have a big fight and reconciliation wherein they learn that everyone is great and nuanced in their own way and that the girls are a great pair for their differences. Did I mention that the movie is chock full of hilarity?
Now that you’re caught up, let’s get into why I love this movie SO MUCH.
I’m someone who is almost always either in a relationship or mourning a breakup. I’m also bisexual but have only ever dated men, and I don’t know if that’s ever going to change. I’ve always been surrounded by friends, but when I’m in a relationship I get tunnel vision and only focus on a partner. This has led to a vast under appreciation of female friendships.
Today, some of my most important relationships are my female friendships. There is so much that a boyfriend couldn’t possibly relate to in the same way as my female friends. My best friends have seen me through a roller coaster of drama and trauma, and been there for me in ways that I can’t say of many boyfriends (sorry!).
When I went into the hospital over the summer, partially as a result of the trauma that a deranged (I don’t use that term lightly) boy put me through, my girlfriends were there for me. The dear Katie Suss, who writes for this blog too, sent me a coloring book of animals and some coloring pencils. I was supposedly still dating the boy at the time- he was abusive during the relationship- and he told me that he couldn’t even make it to visit, nor could he write a letter. I was absolutely shattered when he told me that. A sham such as it was, my female friends were the ones who were there for me.