The Diary of a Teenage Girl

WRITTEN BY: Marielle Heller
DIRECTED BY: Marielle Heller
STARRING: Bel Powley, Alexander Skarsgard, Kristen Wiig, Christopher Meloni
RATING: 3 stars

Based on Phoebe Gloeckner's graphic novel and set in San Francisco in 1976, The Diary of a Teenage Girl is about 15-year-old Minnie (Bel Powley), who is starting to explore her sexuality. Speaking into a tape recorder, Minnie reveals she has lost her virginity to Monroe (Alexander Skarsgard), the boyfriend of her mother Charlotte (Kristen Wiig). Minnie continues to pursue a sexual relationship with Monroe in secret.

There is a lot of sex and sexual exploration going on this film but there does not seem to be much of a point to the story. I was hooked the whole way through, but ultimately, I was left with emptiness. Quite simply, for a film about sex, there was no climax. Minnie comes across as almost like a nymphomaniac in the way she flippantly has sex with strangers and starts to cross the line into prostitution. I do not know anyone who had even close to a similar experience as Minnie. It is a shame because I had hoped to see a film that was more relatable and empowering for teenagers and young women. That being said, Powley's performance is very strong and Skarsgard humanises a man who is actually a villainous creep. Minnie pursues Monroe, so it cannot be said that he corrupts her, but it is still illegal. Wiig is also very good and has great chemistry with Powley. I still cannot make up my mind about The Diary of a Teenage Girl. I enjoyed watching it, but I had some issues with it afterwards.