Chris Nashawaty
August 02, 2014 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Palo Alto

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
98 minutes
Limited Release Date
05/09/14
performer
James Franco, Val Kilmer, Emma Roberts
director
Gia Coppola
genre
Drama

We gave it a B-

Palo Alto is a poignant-but-meandering indie about two teens coming of age in suburbia. Adapted from a 2010 collection of James Franco stories, it was written and directed by Gia Coppola. Emma Roberts is a shy soccer player who can’t stand her binge-drinking popular-girl classmates and is seduced by her coach (Franco). Jack Kilmer (son of Val) is an aimless, weed-smoking screwup who senses that he needs to stop hanging out with his unhinged best friend (Nat Wolff). The film has a dreamy, lyrical quality that captures an age when everything feels like it has earth-shattering importance. But it never offers anything that a dozen other movies about kids growing up too fast haven’t before. B-

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