Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: FLOWER (currently on disc and VOD)

So a little earlier this year I won…several signed posters of this movie FLOWER, signed and starring the incredible hot Zoey Deutch (Vampire Academy, Set It Up, Why Him?, Before I Fall) and signed and directed by Fonzie’s son Winkler. At the time Flower was a very independent independent movie still in theaters, and it never broke out enough to warrant a Cinemark, AMC, or Alamo Drafthouse theatrical release, and instead stayed at the Angelika and so forth, and wasn’t really there long (psst, your independent film probably won’t get far if it is 53% on Rotten Tomatoes). Anyway, I really wanted the poster because I really wanted Zoey Deutch signature, but wasn’t going to make any real effort to see it in theaters unless I could get a visit credit or points for it at my local theater. Well, it came straight to VOD pretty fast, and since I had some credit on VUDU and the film was extremely cheap, I just bought it for about $3 bucks out of my pocket.

The result? Not bad. I don’t think it deserves in the 50’s on Rotten Tomatoes, but definitely somewhere mid 60s. The movie is a short 95 minutes, but I feel like maybe some of the relationships weren’t fully developed and the payoff at the end didn’t exactly well, pay off. Let me try to describe to you what it is about without getting into a late in the game last act dark twist that makes the film worth watching at least once. 17 year old Erica (Zoey Deutch) loves giving blowjobs. Yep, and she loves it so much that she gives them to way over-aged males, has her friends film the aftermath, and then extorts them for money/drugs so she won’t tell on them. Her dad is currently in jail and her mom has had many boyfriends, but it looks like this new one will stick, and along with him comes a mentally unstable future 18 year old stepbrother that is about an inch away from a complete and total meltdown. He reveals that he was sexually molested by a teacher in middle school and reveals that person to be a man named Will, a older man that Erica happens to have a crush on and sees at the bowling alley with her friends every time she goes.

And that is where I will stop. What the movie tries to do, which involves the payoff, makes the story seems like it is going to be about the relationship between Erica and her stepbrother. And some of it is, but I didn’t feel there was enough of a development for the ending that we get. Instead, I think the story focuses a little too much on Will and the molestation thing with the stepbrother. Especially when the dark twist hits, it completely takes away from Erica and the Stepbrother’s relationship for 10 minutes, and then realizes it got off track and just forces it and rams it down our throats in the last 15 minutes of the film. The dark twist was good, but there were too many distractions from plot point A. Part of the distractions is her friends that film the blowjob stuff and then try to join in on the plot point B storyline involving Will. I think that if you had cut those characters out early, and just had Erica and her stepbrother go on that little adventure, the payoff would’ve actually sense. I’m not saying that it completely doesn’t. It does. And that maybe have more to do with the fact that Zoey Deutch is great and bat shit crazy in this and Joey Morgan, who plays the stepbrother, plays a damaged teen very well. And their chemistry is good together, I just didn’t think there was enough of it.

Also, the plot involving Will the teacher, played by a too straight laced Adam Scott in this, kind of has an ending I didn’t really care for. I don’t want to reveal any spoilers, but his arc ends by something that is told to us, rather than shown to us, to have everything in the film that happens justified, and it really doesn’t work. His character shows a little behavior that warrants some things, but no scene is given to us to make the stuff that happens down the line any plausible. You’ll know it when you see it and when it is told to you. There is a story told at. Adam Scott doesn’t bring much to the role unfortunately, and I really like him in a lot of what he does. Kathryn Hahn plays Erica’s mom and even though she’s really only in a handful of scenes, she is great as always.

Anyway, if you can find this for free, I’d recommend a one time watch. But other than that, don’t go out of your way.

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