Writer: Joshua Close, Andy Matic, Elisha Matic (Screenplay) Joanne Proulx (Novel)
Starring: Cameron Monaghan, Grayson Gabriel, Peyton List, Juliette Lewis, Aaron Pearl, Richard de Klerk, Alex MacNicoll
Plot: Anthem tells the story of Luke (Monaghan) a teenager who foresees the death of his new best friend Stan (MacNicoll), the most popular guy in school. When this premonition becomes reality, Luke must deal with the trials and tribulations of being dubbed “The Prophet of Death” and being titled a freak by the entire town.
Runtime: 1 Hour 41 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Brilliant Coming-of-Age Film
Story: Anthem of a Teenage Prophet starts when high school stoner Luke Hunter (Monaghan) gets a vision that his close friend Stan (MacNicoll) will be killed on the way to school in the morning, the next morning, Stan is killed, leaving the rumours about his vision spreading like wildfire through the town. Stan’s girlfriend Faith (List) is broken up about his death as you would imagine, while Luke feels the guilt of not being able to help.
When Luke suffers a second vision of death, he tries to stop it, failing in the process, his mother Mary (Lewis) tries to help him as Luke must face the reality that he will be heading off to college and this new pressure is only going to make his life more stressful.
Thoughts on Anthem of a Teenage Prophet
Characters – Luke Hunter is the normal high school slacker, he spends his time getting stoned more often than studying and it is while getting high, he gets the vision of his best friend dying, when it actually happens, he is left guilt riddled and scared of just what he might be capable off, add in the pressures of high school, the anxiety of growing up and living up to his parents expectations, Luke will face the toughest couple of months of his life. Faith was the girlfriend of Stan the teenager killed, she is left broken and turns to Luke for friendship through the difficult time. Mary is Luke’s mother that does her best to help him through his own struggles with what he saw and what he is going through when it comes to his future. Fang is Luke’s oldest friend, he has his own problems and with Luke being there for him, the question remains can they help each other through the struggles.
Performances – Cameron Monaghan in the leading role here is outstanding, we get to see him show nearly every emotion imaginable for a teenager going through the troubles of high school, we understand each moment and this is because of his performance. Peyton List continues to give us strong performances here with her work, showing the loss she suffered in the film. Juliette Lewis bring the experience to the film handling the mother role effortlessly and knowing how to like Monaghan take centre stage.
Story – The story here shows the struggles a teenager has after having a vision of his best friend being killed becomes a reality and he must deal with the guilt of not being able to stop the accident, while continuing to use this gift to try and help other people close to his life with their own struggles. This story gets to reflect high school anxiety, pressure and demand with the guilt of not being there for friends, showing us how a couple of moments extra time with each person in your own life will provide a positive out light which will make life more enjoyable, even after getting through tragic events. This is going to be one of the best coming of age stories you will see this year, balancing everything out perfectly for the story to unfold at a natural pace.
Settings – The film is set in mall town America, showing the unity between the people in the neighbourhood and the desire to escape to make the most of life from the students, we have iconic settings that will help people achieve what they want from their moments in life.
Final Thoughts – This is easily one of the best films you will see, it has a serious subject matter that is relatable for the audience as well as showing us just how hard the modern pressures of teenage life can be.
Overall: Must watch coming of age film.