When I first saw this film at SIFF last year, I was disappointed, even though it's the kind of movie I generally like: restrained, contemplative, open-ended, with dreamy cinematography. For reasons I couldn't pinpoint, though, I left bored and annoyed.
I think Scott has found my answer. About the film's epileptic, late-adolescent protagonist, Ivy, he writes, that director Bradley Rust Gray's "achievement—and [actress Zoe] Kazan’s, too—is to make you care enough about Ivy to be curious about her. But “The Exploding Girl” can also make you feel bad about wishing that she were just a little more interesting." Mystery solved.
I Totally Disagree with Variety's decision to lay off its star writer Todd McCarthy as a "cost-saving measure." McCarthy has one of the sharpest pens in film criticism, as demonstrated by his last post for Variety , about this year's Sundance theme of "cinematic rebellion." Without his "insightful, masterly commentary on film festivals, box office trends and the state of cinema today" (according to the Variety website), the magazine is sure to lose many of its remaining subscribers and readers. I'm sure they, like I, hope he'll pop up somewhere else very soon.