Powerful and involving.
Review by: MiamiMovieCritic
Added: 7 years ago
The Water's Edge reminds of two other "edge" films: River's Edge and Over the Edge. Those are probably the most realistic youth-in-rebellion films of all time - the "edge" they refer to is pure nihilism. While this feature-length, sensitively made film has nowhere near that kind of verisimilitude, it does address problems that most movies about teens wouldn't dare to touch.
Not because teen problems aren't interesting; they're just not very marketable outside of Young Adult novels. That's kind of what The Water's Edge feels like, and I was surprised to learn that the film didn't start its life as a YA novel.
The film is relentlessly heavy. It's about a girl who gets picked on by all the other kids at school, even by her big brother. Later we find out that she's a narc, which has made her a social outcast. Her situation becomes more bearable when a new girl arrives in town and the two become fast friends. But tragedy is just around the corner.
The teen cast is uniformly strong. The film doesn't feel forced like some teen movies do - an adult's perspective forced on younger characters. It sees the world clearly through their eyes. The story is a bit thin and the movie might have made for one helluva good 30-minute shot, but as is it's still powerful and involving.