High school coming out movies are a staple of LGBTQ cinema. Creating a challenge for new films in offering audiences themes and topics not already covered in a wide collective of films already within the genre. However with Giant Little Ones director Keith Behrman brings us a fresh twist on the genre while maintaining a high school movie aesthetic.
Early in proceedings Behrman dispatches with the usual motifs of a high school coming out story, opting for a far more contemporary exploration of sexuality in modern youth culture.
Franky (Josh Wiggins) and Ballas (Darren Mann) have been close friends since childhood, spending the majority of their days together. However, their friendship is tested and changed by an alcohol fuelled night. Where burgeoning masculinity and teenage experimentation mix to create explosive results for both young men.
Giant Little Ones is at is strongest when exploring the turbulence of youth and intensity of emotions associated with friendship, peer groups and family. Performances are solid throughout, Josh Wiggins capturing the confusion and anger of youth, alongside the fun, exploration and sexual ambiguity of coming of age. While Darren Mann’s Ballas demonstrates the fear of exploration and identity as it clashes with toxic masculinity. Both young men surrounded by strong female characters, Ballas’ sister Natasha (Taylor Hickson) acting as a bridge and barrier, her own life a complex set of judgements and pressures. Cameo performances from Kyle MacLachlan also offer gravitas in exploring issues of identity and family structure in our modern society.
Giant Little Ones defies the normal tried and tested tropes of the high school coming out movie. This is a film that understands the fluidity of sexuality and experimentation. Never seeking to label its characters, while also exploring the different coping mechanisms each character deploys. Humour is interlaced with drama throughout, with scenes between Franky and a close trans friend beautifully constructed and delivered. Its young cast shining on screen, bringing the diversity of teenage experience and emotions to life.
Giant Littles Ones is a film that dares to be different and creative, reflecting the modern journey of sexual discovery for young people in our 21st century world, never succumbing to stereotypes or easy answers the process.
Country: Canada 🇨🇦
Director: Keith Behrman