All The Real Girls is an attempt to delve deeper into the emotional landscape involved with being young and in love. Most movies that try to tackle this very complicated issue often only so a very superficial job. The main thrust of this movie is to examine what it’s actually like to be smitten i.e. not being able to think straight, how desperate our emotions can make us feel and doing things we hadn’t planned and facing the consequences.
Paul (Paul Schneider) is the 22 year old town heart-throb who is wo…king his way through all of the girls in town. His motto is “ love’em and leave’em.” This is contrasted with his soon to be love interest Noel (Zooey Deschanel). Noel is the 18-year-old sister of Paul’s best friend who just returned from 6 years of boarding school. Yikes! I guess Paul never heard of the unwritten rule: never date your best friend’s sister. Of course this leads to difficulties between Paul and Tip (Noel’s brother), and Tip and Noel. The dialogue feels and sounds very natural and very commonplace. It’s as close to the real thing that one is going to find in a movie.
The interesting contrast is further delineated in Noel’s innocence in her quest for experience versus Paul’s experience in trying to find innocence. Heavy stuff, but not so heavy that it’s viewers can’t relate to the material.
The film is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen. The picture is sharp and well defined. The colors were warm given the earthy style of the cinematography and during the evening scenes the color level and brightness was excellent.
The film is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1. With this type of movie, one wouldn’t expect great use of surround sound and there isn’t much here. On occasion there is some mild ambiance sounds but that’s about it. There’s a decent modern rock soundtrack with good bass effect.
There is a director and cast commentary track that does add a lot of depth to the movie. David Gordon Green, the director, takes the viewer on an interesting ride to describe his intentions and unique style on the commentary track. “Improv and ensemble: The Evolution of a Film” is an 18 minute long documentary that features interviews with the director, writer and cast. This basically sums up most of what is offered in the commentary track. The deleted scenes add a little to the story to flesh it out a bit, but otherwise do not detract from the theatrical cut.
“All the Real Girls” is a more gritty and visceral movie than most of the films in the romantic drama genre. While it may not appear to have much structure, other than following the consequences of the torrid relationship between Paul and Noel. The acting is great and the characters and dialogue is very believable. “All the Real Girls” is definitely in the upper echelon of romantic dramas.
Special Features List
- Commentary by director and cast
- Theatrical trailer
- “Improv and Ensemble: The Evolution of a Film”
- Deleted scenes