Flirting - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Flirting Reviews

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August 19, 2016
From the movie poster and the thumbnail of the trailer you'd think the focus is all on Nicole Kidman, but no, this film defies its own description. So masterfully done, so beautiful, so powerful. This was the second in what was supposed to be a trilogy and it's the kind of story that lets you finish with your own imagination.
September 5, 2015
Unnerving sentimentality.
½ April 28, 2015
A lake separates the male and female dormitories of Australia's rural St. Albans boarding school, but water can hardly part the flirtatious musk hovering in the air between windows. It's 1965, and love, fear, sexual desire, and whole-hearted awkwardness is radiating from the bodies of the students. Headmasters stalk the hallways, looking for a passerby to whip; pangs are repressed in favor of mild-mannered behavior. But as the students age, their romances flicker into a sudden burst of unbridled flame. Sooner or later, they have to leave their childhood fears behind - upcoming is adulthood.
"Flirting" is a lyrical snapshot of the inelegant but lilting time in which innocence washes away and is replaced with uncomfortable, yet exciting, verisimilitude. It's a high school movie, but it can hardly be compared to the wispy transparency of its many clichéd rivals. It's not a one-note "Weird Science" pile or a sassy "Mean Girls"; it's more akin to "The Breakfast Club", considering the thoughts and decisions of young adults and finding the beauty in their successes, in their flaws. Some teenagers are one-track-minded and beastly, but more are attentive. "Flirting" casts the immature rascals aside and puts a spotlight on the youths that contemplate the outcome of each and every decision. In that respect, the film is better because, for once, the youngsters once characterized by Anthony Michael Hall and Shirley Temple suddenly become introspective humans, not cartoons.
Danny Embling (Noah Taylor) is a gangly 17-year-old with a stutter to get over. His head is too big for his body, his body is too small for his head, and the words that come out of his mouth don't sound as sophisticated as he would like. But he is a rebel, knowing that real-life mistakes aren't followed by an authoritative whipping and that math doesn't really matter in the long run. He idolizes Satre not only for his work but also for his poise, and he longs to break free from St. Albans so he can fully realize his many potentials.
Thadiwe Adjewa (Thandie Newton), the exotic Ugandan-Kenyan-British daughter of a diplomat, has just arrived on the grounds, inadvertently inviting unwanted scrutiny from her female classmates. She is remarkably intelligent and effortlessly beautiful - perhaps she intimates the opposite sex, fuels the jealousy of her gawky roommates. When Danny and Thandiwe lock eyes at a rugby game one day, a spark ignites. His perceptive aura matches her cerebral wit - infatuation thrives. It doesn't take long before a mutual adoration erupts. They've never felt love like this before, and they're going to make it count for the few months they have together.
The majority of teen movies believe they have to be self-deprecatingly funny or overly simple to be successful, completely unaware that purity is ultimately more winning than materialistic quotability. Teenagers are fascinating creatures, phenomenons of emotion, but films tend to liken them as a target of satire. A shame. A movie like "Flirting" vibrates with poignancy; in the process, I connected with its sensitive characters and, eventually, built enough of a relationship with them to a point where I felt the need to compare their hesitations and choices to my very own life. Duigan watches them move and applies their burgeoning ideals to even the hardest of moments; scenes, like the closing one (in which Danny and Thandiwe spend their last night together in a local hotel in order to properly say goodbye), defy expectations through their mannered receptiveness.
A film like "Flirting" is easy to hold close to the heart because its conflicts have been felt by all. It's touching, it's romantic, it's witty - it ripples with pensive quiet. It doesn't just flirt with brilliance; it is brilliant, whether it knows it or not. (It also made stars out of Newton and Nicole Kidman, and kickstarted the careers of Taylor and Naomi Watts.)
Super Reviewer
August 4, 2014
Not bad, not amazing, not bad.
½ April 12, 2013
Flirting is both witty and charming
toejambaseball24
Super Reviewer
½ December 23, 2012
Wow, this was a really great coming-of-age story that has all the elements that you would want from this type of movie. I've seen Noah Taylor here and there (I think I remember him from the Willy Wonka remake with Johnny Depp), but I had no idea that he had this type of talent. A really great, heartwarming movie about love, and growing up. I think I might love this movie a little bit.
December 26, 2011
Quirky and cute tale with a great message.
October 19, 2011
powerful, mesmerizing film..
Critique Threatt
Super Reviewer
October 19, 2011
This is a great film. Cried my eyes out. Thandie Newton is great I really admired her character. The same goes for Noah Taylor, Nicole Kidman. Real romance at it's finest.
½ August 16, 2011
Having recently watched The Year My Voice Broke, I had to check out the sequel made a couple years later. The funny thing is, this was released right around the time Nicole Kidman was becoming famous, so on the cover of the film she gets top billing and is the main figure shown, when in the film she's only in it about 20 minutes or so. The film stars Noah Taylor, a couple years after we last saw him from the first film in an all male boarding school. There's an all girl boarding school across the lake and he quickly falls in love with Thandie Newton (in her first film). It's a very charming film with honest performances from all the characters, it's great that there's not really any cliched characters or moments in the film, it's just a very sweet and entertaining romantic film. It's too bad that this was supposed to be the second part of a trilogy, but the third film has yet to be made. And it's also unfortunate that recent news has surfaced about the director and his involvement with Thandie. Regardless, you should check this out if you haven't seen it.
Super Reviewer
June 26, 2011
Charming and entertaining, Flirting, have a captivating script, acting and a good direction that make the audience watch Duigan's movie from the beginning to his end. Fresh.
½ June 7, 2011
Great coming of age drama with a young Kidman.
½ May 31, 2011
Funny and touching, this is the most credible story I have seen about girls trapped in boarding school, While it's one of those awful Catholic schools, which is not something in my experience, the personalities depicted in this film come closest to reminding me of my own experiences.

After a tremendous build--up of sexual anticipation however, both for the two central characters, and vicariously, for the viewer, the way the second girl loses her cherry in the end is sordid, cheap and anti-anticlimactical. While it might be realistic for some girls, it wasn't believable that she would have chosen to do it this way given all that it meant to her.
May 23, 2011
hidden teenage romance between two pupils, where boys where not aloud to visit the girls school and the opposite.
Super Reviewer
May 1, 2011
I didn't really get it. I didn't feel the adolescent pains.
April 26, 2011
This movie was better than I expected, with some early work for Australian stars Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts as well as British actors Thandie Newton and Noah Taylor. Is a story about some Australian schoolies who are trying to make it through late adolescence while under the strict supervision and atmosphere of their Australian prep/boarding-school. The characters are interesting and its not too much of a teen-movie like it sounds. Worth watching, and I will probably watch it a second time some day in the future.
½ February 4, 2011
I happened upon this movie one night on HBO and was presently surprised. The story was very real and the acting from all the young characters was top notch. The ending stayed with me for quite a while.
December 18, 2010
A sly and coolly funny little high school sex comedy that pushes the envelope enough to be cheeky without ever going far enough to be considered dirty. The film focuses more on the building of these relationships, rather than the act of consummation, and it's more rewarding for it.

Wish the first film, The Year My Voice Cracked, was on DVD as well.
½ August 6, 2010
"People like to have someone to look down on. It makes them feel better about themselves."
½ July 28, 2010
Oh My God i love charmed!!!! This is so lovely!!!
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