Ellen full movie review - Earnest, commendable film
I'm in the U.S, I watched this made-for-TV film yesterday and am still struck by the films story, portrayal and message.
Most of the cast deliver very fine performances (particularly our protagonist) and the directing is quite good. I'm glad that I had the chance to watch, it's touching. Ellen is a 14 year old girl in a broken home and is living with her mom and dying grandmom in a council home (project). Her father is a railway engineer of sorts and is deliberately absent from her life, he only acknowledges his other daughter to his comrades (we never meet him).
Her mother is an immature, selfish alcoholic who's more concerned with throwing parties and her latest fling than she is for the welfare of her young daughter. Ellen's friends are liquor, drugs, Kayla, and Jason. Kayla is a schoolmate whom Ellen has never acknowledged until one lonely night where the two party together. Kayla's mom is deceased, and her dad is a truck driver who spends his days on the road and often leaves her alone. Kayla is a good and kind girl and sort of more self-controlled than Ellen, but has little resistance to acting wild with her new friend. Jason is a man in his late 20's or early 30's. He's a neighbor who sometimes parties with her mom. He seems lonely and relates his own adolescence well with that of Ellen's. He shows real concern. He provides her with a free phone, food, support and companionship.
Unease sets in early for the audience. Her moms newest boyfriend behaves decidedly predatory, like a pedo. So Ellen avoids him and her mum. Ellen seems hell-bent on self- destruction, and has no parental support.
What will happen with this young girl?