Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. is a 2023 American adaptation of the much loved and extremely influential 1970 novel of the same name by Judy Blume (Forever, Superfudge).
This glorious screen version is written and directed by Kelly Fremon (The Edge of Seventeen) and will be available in the UK on Blu-ray and DVD from 7th August 2023, courtesy of Lionsgate UK.
“What are you taking her over there with the schmucks and the condos on the other side of the Hudson? And those mafia diners where they shoot each other.”
Margaret Simon (Abby Ryder Fortson – Ant-Man and the Wasp) is an eleven year old girl, living happily with her parents Barbara (Rachel McAdams – Doctor Strange, Sherlock Holmes) and Herb (Benny Safdie – Oppenheimer, Good Time) in New York City. Her life is turned upside down one day when she returns from summer camp to her Jewish paternal grandmother Sylvia (Kathy Bates – Misery, Titanic) dropping a bombshell, the family are moving to New Jersey following a promotion for Herb.
Margaret doesn’t want to leave, so she turns to God to try and help her, alas the move still goes ahead, much to Sylvia’s annoyance. Margaret soon makes friends in the new neighbourhood, meeting Nancy Wheeler (Elle Graham – Stranger Things, Trial By Fire), who lives just up the street and is in the same grade. She allows her to join her secret group, along with Janie (Amari Price – The Knife) and Gretchen (Katherine Kupferer – Widows). They have a series of rules, including not wearing socks and telling each other everything about periods.
As well as navigating the minefield that is pre-adolescence, Margaret is also exploring her religious options, half Jewish and half Christian, she still has to decide her own path. To help her do this, she talks to her own version of God for guidance (and to request a helping hand with her womanly development). At the same time, they are all starting to notice boys and that presents a whole new set of challenges.
“You know, coming from New York I thought you’d be a lot more grown up. Have you ever kissed a boy?”
Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. is a fantastic adaptation of this seminal coming-of-age story. Despite being over fifty years old, the subject matter covered in the story is every bit as relevant today and this film truly does it justice.
The acting is superb, three generations of women just trying to find their place in the world and it is sure to touch the hearts and minds of pretty much anyone who has ever been an eleven year old girl. It’s all so relatable, wanting to start your periods but not realising how messy it is when you do, wanting to wear a bra but not realising how uncomfortable they are, we’ve all been there.
The film is awkward in all the best ways, brutally honest about the everyday challenges of just existing as a pre adolescent girl and without any of the usual Hollywood bells and whistles tacked on to cover up the messy truth about growing up.
A brilliant watch, must own for females everywhere and well worth adding to your collection.
“Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret. I can’t believe this. What kind of parents would do that? And blame it on religion? God, please take care of my Mom. She’s a good person.”
Lionsgate UK presents Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. on digital now and on Blu-ray and DVD 7 August
|Genre||Comedy, drama, family|
|Starring||Abby Ryder Fortson, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates, Elle Graham|
|Available to buy on :|