Like many films starring teens or pitched to a teen audience, Cherry Crush falls short on intrigue and plays long on wrought dialog and narration. What Cherry Crush has that say, Cruel Intentions, doesn't have is a languid and saturated visual feel that distracts from the film's occasionally empty writing. The film has a similar feel to The Virgin Suicides, which also focuses its artistic energies on creating rich landscapes and detailed portraits of its characters (rather than character development). Director Nick DiBella's choice to prioritize style is a good one given his strength with the camera. It's no wonder that the protagonist in his co-writing debut is a photographer. Because of its sophisticated cinematography and laudable go at film noir in color, Cherry Crush deserves to be offered to an art house audience. The story of a rich kid bewitched by a mysterious pauper isn't a terribly sympathetic, but putting the failures of the plot concept aside, DiBella captures his subject well.
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A seventeen-year-old photographer gets caught up in murder when he breaks his own rules and falls in love with one of his teenage models.
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April 2, 2019