Films centering around teenagers trying to lose their virginity have long been a cinematic trope; however, they are usually limited to low-brow dude comedies like Porky’s (1982) and American Pie (1999.) The sub-genre gets indie feminine twist in the new drama Very Good Girls which just recently debuted a trailer. The film stars Dakota Fanning and Elizabeth Olsen are friends who forge a pact to lose their virginity in the summer that follows their graduation from high school. Complications arise when they both fall for the same guy. Very Good Girls premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and will be available on iTunes on June 24th before hitting theaters on July 25th. The film is being released by Tribeca Film.
Very Good Girls marks the directorial debut of Naomi Foner, who also penned the original screenplay. Foner previously wrote the 1988 River Phoenix film Running on Empty, for which she received an Oscar nomination. She also wrote the screenplays for the films A Dangerous Woman (1993), Losing Isaiah (1994) and Bee Season (2005.) Foner is also the mother of actors Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal. The film pits Fanning and Olsen as rivals when they both fall for a young ice cream vendor (played by Boyd Holbrook.) The ensemble is rounded out by Oscar winning actor Richard Dreyfus, Marvel mainstay Clark Gregg, Peter Sarsgaard, Ellen Barkin and Demi Moore. One trope that’s not disavowed in Very Good Girls is that of twenty-something actors playing high school students – Olsen in 25 and Fanning is 20.
What hopefully does seem fresh comes from the performers themselves. Both Olsen and Fanning have traversed the cinematic landscape in a short period of time, nimbly working on projects both grand and small. Fanning, who appeared in the Twilight franchise, has scaled back in years since ratcheting warm notices for the currently in theaters eco-thriller Night Moves opposite Jesse Eisenberg and is next set to appear in the Amy Berg drama Every Secret Thing, which recently premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. Olsen, who despite her lineage as the younger sister to the twins Mary-Kate and Ashley, trained as an actress before her breakthrough in the disturbing 2011 indie Martha Marcy May Marlene. She has since appeared in the films Kill Your Darlings (2013) and this spring’s In Secret while mixing those with the tentpole heavyweights like the currently in theaters revamp of Godzilla and next summer’s sure thing The Avengers: Age of Ultron.