Bo Burnham is not for everyone. But his first feature film as a director might be. The stand-up comedian and musician turned filmmaker is tackling the classic genre of teen coming of age movie. He's doing it at a very weird time in American history, when social media is overtaking youth culture. Though, older audiences will notice a lot actually hasn't changed in these hallowed halls of middle school.
For those who've experienced it, for those going through it, and for those about to entry the fray, Eighth Grade is one of the most transitional periods in anyone's life. And that's captured here perfectly in the first trailer for Burnham's movie of the same name. This first look at the dramatic comedy shines an achinginly funny, yet true spotlight on growing up in the age of Snapchat. And some will surely label it a horror movie.
This festival darling, starring newcomer Elsie Fisher, charmed audiences at Sundance and South by Southwest and will hit theaters nationwide this July. And we're sure to hear a lot more about it as summer approaches. It will almost be like attending summer school for some. And a perfect time capsule for others. And it's a great teaching tool for parents of all ages who are suffering through the same kind of experiences with their children.
Eighth grade is awkward and uncomfortable and almost universally terrible. That's the experience Bo Burnham captures in his film directorial debut. The movie, which the comedian also wrote, follows 13-year-old Kayla (newcomer Elsie Fisher) through her final week of middle school, navigating crushes, sex education, social media anxiety, acne, and parents, and mean girls. (Take a moment now to be grateful that Instagram didn't exist when you were at your most gawky.)
As a comedian, Burnham released three specials, and created and starred in the short-lived MTV series Zach Stone is Gonna Be Famous. He originally rose to prominence with YouTube videos of parody songs he wrote. Burnham also directed comedy specials for Jerrod Carmichael and Chris Rock. On the movie side of things, he appeared in the comedy Rough Night starring opposite Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon and Jillian Bell. He also had a very memorable role in the critically acclaimed romantic comedy The Big Sick opposite Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan.
The real stand out in Eighth Grade is Burnham's leading lady Elsie Fisher. She got her start as the voice of Agnes in Despicable Me, and has gone onto various live-action roles, appearing in quite a few TV series over the past few years. She really made her mark on the big screen in McFarland, USA. Here, she takes on her first lead role in a major motion picture.
Eighth Grade originally premiered at Sundance. You can catch the movie in theaters on July 13. Here's everything you need to know thanks to A24 Films.