"All I ever wanted was for Juli Baker to leave me alone."
Flipped is easily the best love story/relationship movie I've seen since (500) Days of Summer. I'm the kind of guy that you couldn't pay to watch a Nicholas Sparks movie, but that doesn't mean that I can't appreciate a good movie about the highs and lows of love. In a year of formulaic, mind-numbing flicks with no imagination or heart like Letters to Juliet, Flipped is a welcome breath of fresh air.
It's about 8 or so years in the lives of two kids who meet when when one of them moves into a new neighborhood. Juli (played by Morgan Lily and Madeline Carroll) is instantly smitten by Bryce (Ryan Ketzner and Callan McAuliffe) the second she sees him drive up to his new house. Bryce, being a typical second grade boy, finds her attention embarrassing and unwanted. As they get older, that dynamic between them remains pretty much the same, but we wouldn't have a very interesting movie if that's all there was to it. Eventually Bryce finds himself on the other side of the equation (flipped, get it?), and has to win back the girl he never knew he always wanted.
How odd is it that a movie about a couple of kids handles the topic of love in a more mature and genuine way than almost all of the adult-oriented romantic comedies that we're buried under each year? There's no doubt about it that Flipped will make you say "aww" on occasion, but there's a lot more to it than just kids being cute. Humor, issues of class, family conflict, and the lost idealism of youth are introduced into the story by Bryce and Juli's respective families, and there are several outright bittersweet or poignant scenes within the story.
The movie is shown from the POV's of both main characters, and often the same event will be shown from each of their perspectives. It works really well, as it really helps the viewer to "get" both Bryce and Juli. The kids chosen to play the older versions of the two (Carroll and McAuliffe) are both great, the fact that the story is set in 50's or 60's suburbia adds a believable sense of innocence to it all, and there is just a fresh feeling to the movie that I can't really describe with words.
I heartily recommend this to anyone who likes a good, well-written movie, regardless of the genre. You can tell that a lot of heart went into making Flipped, and it shows. Great movie.