The Exploding Girl is a sensitive, naturalistic film about Ivy, who comes home to Brooklyn during a college break She doesn’t get up to anything much except exchanging tedious cell phone calls (just like real life!) with her boyfriend and hanging out with Al, a friend who sleeps on her couch when he finds out his parent have rented out his room.
As Ivy Zoe Kazan is marvellous and for a change actually looks like an eighteen or nineteen-year-old college student: awkward and unsure but bright and curious. She is as unknowable to us as she is to herself. Perhaps Ivy’s outward calm and understated behaviour are coping mechanisms she has developed to deal with her epilepsy. She knows enough to try to control her condition but she doesn’t always know how to shape the events around her. The film is rather slow and uneventful but it is different and honest and enjoyable to watch. Watch out for the interesting soundscapes including almost constant traffic noise.