|Josh Wiggins as Franky in ‘Giant Little Ones’|
Check out the official trailer for Giant Little Ones, a heartfelt coming-of-age film about high school friendships, self-discovery, and sexual awakening.
The movie, directed by Keith Behrman, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival last September, and just released the official trailer.
The official synopsis for the film reads:
“Franky Winter (Josh Wiggins) and Ballas Kohl (Darren Mann) have been best friends since childhood. They are high school royalty: handsome, stars of the swim team and popular with girls. They live a perfect teenage life – until the night of Franky’s epic 17th birthday party, when Franky and Ballas are involved in an unexpected incident that changes their lives forever.”
Apparently, Ballas is the experienced pro at sex with his girlfriend, while Franky hasn’t made the leap into sexual intimacy with his girlfriend.
The ‘incident,’ as you might guess, is a drunken, late night sexual encounter in Franky’s bed. When the morning comes, Ballas freaks out and makes a hurried exit.
Soon, the school is buzzing with rumors that Franky may be gay (thanks to Ballas), and Franky (still a virgin) finds himself questioning his own sexuality before he can even figure out who he is.
His soul-searching leads him to finally cope with a personal, family issue he’s never resolved: his father (Kyle MacLachlan) leaving his mother (Maria Bello) to go live with a male partner.
While it’s not clear how much time has passed since the breakup, Franky is fairly estranged from his dad. The situation presents an unusual dynamic for a teen trying to understand his burgeoning sexuality.
Also, without his best friend Ballas to lean on in a difficult time, he finds solace with Ballas’ sister, Natasha, who is also a social outcast. The two renew their childhood friendship, but is the attraction their co-outcast status? Or is Franky trying to parse feelings for Ballas?
|Darren Mann as Ballas in ‘Giant Little Ones’|
Along the way, there’s also a transgender friend and a gay teammate on the swim team, so there’s much for Franky to accept or resent. And that includes possibly some internal homophobia over the idea he might be gay.
The fresh take here is that Behrman isn’t focused on our teen hero coming out, but exploring how lies can shift public perception, and how homophobia can rewrite a teen’s life.
The Hollywood Reporter praised the film calling Giant Little Ones “a confidently shot and beautifully acted story that manages to transcend quite a few — if clearly not all — of the coming-of-age genre’s cliches by delving into how the Millennial generation experiences sexuality, ostracism and growing up and how they try to relate to their parents and peers.”
The Film Stage called the movie “Flawless… adolescence with an authenticity rarely seen.”
And Seventh Row raved, “One of the most warm, thoughtful, and patient explorations of teen sexuality that the coming-of-age genre has to offer.”
Giant Little Ones is set to open in New York City on March 1, then in Los Angeles and select cities across the U.S. on March 8.