‘My Best Worst Adventure‘ is written and directed by Joel Soisson. It is an indie coming-of-age story that takes us from the concrete jungle into the beautiful nation of Thailand.
Jenny (Lily Patra) refuses to speak after her mother passes away and is frustrated when her stepfather (Eoin O’Brien) sends her to Thailand to spend the summer with her eccentric grandmother (Pan Rugtawatr). Though she feels like an outsider, she briefly befriends Archit (Chinnaphat Kitichaivaranggoon) who turns out to be a bully who picks on local boy Boonrod (Pan Rugtawatr), whose only friends are an ox and a dog. Boonrod’s family is heavily in debt so when Jenny hears of an ox race where the prize could help her new friend, they decide to enter to help them.
Coming-of-age films these days feel like pointless teen dramas with high schoolers who have superficial problems. This is not the case for this movie. In fact, it tells of a girl who is suffering from the loss of her mom, leading to the loss of her voice. She is thrown into a strange environment that she likens to “aliens” only to discover more about herself as well as her lost mother.
The actors certainly do a good job of telling this story. You genuinely feel connected with Jenny through Lily Patra as she goes on this journey to rediscover her roots, make new friends, and realizes just how loved she is. The rest of the cast also does a good job as they navigate through the plot and their effect on Jenny’s story. Besides Patra, Pan Rugtawatr does a good job as he navigates being bullied at school and abused by his father, with his only friends being an ox and a dog. It made for some compelling moments where we get to see some depth.
I also appreciated that the plot did not veer off and stayed on message. We see Jenny grow from an unappreciative teenager to someone who cares about her family and works through her grief. Now, I do feel that the ox race point of the film came a bit late to the story. It should have been introduced earlier on instead of a “deus ex machina” moment. That, of course, is a minor detail.
Bottom line, My Best Worst Adventure is a wholesome coming-of-age story about a young woman who finds what she is looking for at a home she never knew existed. It is something we can all relate to and appreciate on the big screen.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Some mild language, Some minor violence
FAVORITE QUOTE: I’ve been abducted by aliens.
Check out the trailer below:
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