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My Best Worst Adventure - Movie Review

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My Best Worst Adventure

My Best Worst Adventure will hook you right from its warm and comical beginning.  It’s hard to stop yourself from smiling as you witness an ultra urban-looking young teenager sitting on a raggedy bus as her joyless expression falls while being “groomed” by a fellow passenger.  Her face says it all in this coming-of-age narrative: do not touch me and yet . . . here she is, in rural Thailand, with someone else’s fingers in her hair and her face while being offered a bug to eat. 

"If you are looking for honest emotion, look no further than My Best Worst Adventure"


 

My Best Worst Adventure might be for the entire family, but it also delivers the goods on an extremely personal note as moods are enhanced by a wonderful tone which aligns us, almost right from the start, to pulling for whatever this young girl finds herself in the middle of.   

Her story is a tragic one.  Jenny (Lily Patra) is being sent to Thailand to meet her grandmother and the rest of her mother’s family upon the passing of her mother in America.  The trip is arranged by her set-father who is at his wit’s end with the mute-by-choice teenager.  She enjoys making everyone around her miserable and, with only her art and her diary by way of an iPad, she is packed up and shipped to spend some time where lizards rule the ceilings and the walls.

Maybe here, among her eccentric grandmother, a family she doesn’t really know, and a couple of boys she finds interesting, she’ll learn something about life, grief, and loss.  This heartwarming tale is expertly shot and acted, making it a surprise end-of-the-year discovery.  Cinematographer Roberto Serrini really has captured a wonderful side to Thailand that is not always seen as elephants bathe, buffalo races are realized (with great tracking shots), and the My Best Worst Adventure

Written and directed by Joel Soisson (Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Piranha 3DD), My Best Worst Adventure is the coming of age story 2020 needed.  It is right up there with the highs of Nicolas Roeg’s Walkabout, albeit with elements of Gary RossSeabiscuit thrown in for good measure.  This is a small tale with a big heart behind it and it echoes throughout this narrative with a precision that is to be celebrated.

After beating up a local teen heartthrob named Archit (Chinnaphat Kitichaivaranggoon) - who happens to be the favored grandson of the village kingpin - Jenny finds herself fleeing into the thick canvas of strangling vines and jungle.  It is here, without a map or a guide to help her, where she becomes hopelessly lost, alone, and afraid.  But, for the adept viewer, we know that her salvation is right around the corner (so to speak). 

Deep in the jungle, she encounters a mute peasant boy named Boonrod (Pan Rugtawatr) who leads her back to safety. In this beaten and bullied outcast, Jenny sees someone even worse off than herself and, as she refuses to do something for herself, she attempts to help him. Maybe her helping him will lead to greater things, you know?  Together, they decide to take on Archit and his fellow elites and hit them where it matters most - the national buffalo race - and, truth be told, this Kentucky Derby on steroids, without horses, saddles or rules, is EXACTLY what she needed.

Jenny soon learns that winning is about more than being first across the finish line and, in it, lies the heart of this little film that could.  Magical and endlessly entertaining, My Best Worst Adventure will bowl you over with its incredible nuances.

If you are looking for honest emotion, look no further than My Best Worst Adventure which will soon be in limited release in theaters and streaming from Itsy Bitsy Film, Motion Pictures Company, Road Dawg Films.

4/5 stars

My Best Worst Adventure

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My Best Worst Adventure

MPAA Rating: PG-13 on appeal for crude sexual content and language.
Runtime:
85 mins
Director
: Joel Soisson
Writer:
Joel Soisson
Cast:
Lily Patra, Pan Rugtawatr
Genre
: Adventure
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Distributor:
 Itsy Bitsy Film, Motion Pictures Company, Road Dawg Films
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My Best Worst Adventure

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