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Posted By Dr. Ben Kim
If there's a truly must-see film for all parents and children who are about 10 and older, this is it. I stumbled upon "Trust," directed by David Schwimmer, at our library the other day and barely blinked through this story of a good family that is devastated by their 14-year old daughter falling prey to an online pedophile.
Please have a look at the trailer here:
What follows are excerpts from Roger Ebert's review of "Trust":
"It tells its story of a 14-year-old girl and a predatory pedophile as a series of repercussions in which rape is only the first, and possibly not the worst, tragedy to strike its naive and vulnerable victim."
"At its core is a remarkable performance by young Liana Liberato, who plays Annie Cameron, the happy child of a good home in upper-crust Wilmette. We hear a lot about the premature sexualization of young teens; she portrays a "good girl" who isn’t advanced, who feels uncomfortable at a party where "popular girls" fake sophistication. She’s ... a nice kid."
"She’s never had a boyfriend when she meets Charlie in an online chat room. Charlie is in high school. Like her, he plays volleyball. He’s a nice kid, too. He understands her. She grows closer to Charlie than any boy she’s ever known. They talk for hours on the phone."
"Charlie makes a confession. Actually, he’s in college. Actually, he’s a graduate student. Actually, he’s 25. "Why do you keep lying?" she asks. But Charlie is comforting and persuasive. She agrees to meet him in a mall."
"She must have been warned about cases of online predators like him — but they couldn’t have been talking about her Charlie. Yet when Charlie turns up, he’s clearly well into his 30s. Annie is crushed. But he is persuasive and compelling, a smooth talker, pushing all the right buttons, exploiting her idealized fantasies about himself."
"For Annie, the loss of her virginity is not the worst of it. More important is her reputation, her world in New Trier High School, her self-esteem. She might almost have been better off not telling anyone what happened. She confides in a friend, who blabs to the school principal, and she’s led away from school by two uniformed officers who come to investigate the crime. In this and countless details for the rest of the film, we realize a psychic rape is being added to the original one. Only a reserved but tactful psychiatrist (Viola Davis) completely understands what is happening."
"Annie’s parents are good people. Her British father Will (Clive Owen) is a marketing executive — ironically, catering to the market for sexy teen fashions exploited by the notorious American Apparel retail chain. Her mother Lynn (Catherine Keener) is sensible and loving. The marriage is healthy. What Annie desperately needs is privacy and space. What she gets is an intrusive FBI investigation, brutal gossip at high school, cruel jokes played on the Internet, and the destruction of the idealized vision of Charlie she clings to."
"It is all too tortuous and complicated. Liana Liberato does such a poignant job of showing how, and why. She has three scenes in particular where her wounded feelings spill out in words of anguish, and they are so well-written and well-acted that they’re heartbreaking. David Schwimmer has made one of the year’s best films: Powerfully emotional, yes, but also very perceptive."
To read Roger Ebert's full review, click here:
Many thanks to David Schwimmer and his collaborators for creating this film and for their ongoing efforts to oppose the sexualizing of young girls in popular culture.
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