A SURPRISING THUMBS UP FILM REVIEW RATING!
AQUAMARINE certainly won’t help you sprout any new brain cells, but it will entertain and is very appropriate for tweens.
The story of friendship between young girls has been done ad nauseam. But this time a half-fish, half-human gets thrown into the mix. Aquamarine (Sara Paxton, SUMMERLAND TV series), gets heaved from the ocean after an argument with her father (we can easily assume that her dad is Neptune or some such god). She lands one stormy night in the swimming pool near the beach. The following evening best friends Claire (Emma Roberts, SPYMATE) and Hailey (Joanna ‘Jo Jo’ Levesque, RV) discover Aquamarine and immediately befriend the mermaid. Crazy antics happen as Aqua learns to walk for the first time, tries to get Raymond (Jake McDorman, ECHOES OF INNOCENCE) — the local lifeguard stud — to fall in love with her in hopes that she won’t have to return to the ocean and marry some merman she doesn’t care for, and teaches the best friends what true friendship, and growing up, is all about.
The open-faced innocence of the movie is the biggest draw. Clair (Roberts) and Hailey (Levesque) know nothing of sex, drugs, alcohol, or other teenage hazards. They live in a safe bubble that is barely held together by the idyllic community in which we find them. And, strangely enough, that is a pretty big plus for the film. Its minimally challenging plot harkens back to times when kids didn’t have giant obstacles to overcome and just had to be ...kids.
But the production still has some inventive and modern moments. "Shellphones" are pretty cool, as are the tiny starfish that can be worn as earrings (not to mention the fact that the starfish speak in your ears and compliment the wearer).
This is as safe a movie as parents will find out there in the ever increasing minefield of questionable teen films. It won’t push any boundaries for their kids, but aren’t they being pushed enough already?