Wildflower (2023) is a dramedy film about Bambi Johnson, the daughter of mentally challenged parents who perseveres through a considerably difficult upbringing. The film is streaming on Hulu.
Bambi ‘Bea’ Johnson was born to mentally challenged parents who regardless of their limitations, did their best to love and care for her as she grew up.
However, as she grew older she had more responsibility thrust upon her and this affected her significantly. Her aunt and uncle get involved as Bea starts going to private school and has some normal experiences that a teenager must have.
Every time she starts to feel like life is going her way, something unfortunate happens that convinces her that she cannot have a life of her own and must always be around to take care of her parents.
Kiernan Shipka is wonderfully charming as Bea in this film. She balances youthful charisma with the stresses of responsibility well and portrays a child who has to grow up too soon perfectly.
Dash Mihok and Samantha Hyde are great as Derek and Sharon. They do not ham it up or overcompensate in their roles as Bea’s parents.
The film has a warm-hearted feel to it and still excels when it comes to the more tender moments between Bea and her parents. Shipka’s internal monologue narrating her life story is a nice creative touch.
Bea’s depiction as a child who has to deal with a unique childhood and make sacrifices because of it is very real and authentic. The writers have stuck to the basics and supplied a sweet experience.
The film doesn’t push the envelope enough and takes a very simplistic approach which doesn’t distinguish it from other films of this genre.
The story isn’t entirely fleshed out and while Bea’s journey is well-executed, there are still several holes that aren’t plugged up significantly.
Wildflower (2023) is a feel-good film with some dramatic moments for effect. Kiernan Shipka and the rest of the cast do a captivating job in a movie that doesn’t feel impactful enough but still succeeds in pulling at the heartstrings of the audience.
Director: Matt Smukler
Date Created: 2023-06-23 09:30