CST Throwback Thursday – Film of the Week

Share Button

by Ralph Linardic,

After seeing “Lady Bird”, a film that will most likely be in my top ten films of the year list, I decided to write about another fantastic coming-of-age drama for this week’s throwback film. “The Way, Way Back” was released in 2013, and stars Liam James as Connor, a kid who is having difficulty accepting his mom’s boyfriend (Steve Carell). Most of the film revolves around Connor working at a water park and connecting with Owen (Sam Rockwell) and his new friend Susanna (AnnaSophia Robb).

As much as I loved Liam James as Connor, the anchor of this movie is Sam Rockwell’s performance. I’ve watched hundreds of fantastic teenage movies, but this performance stands out as the best in all of them. Sam Rockwell gave me so much joy mentoring Connor and teaching him about life and how the world works. He gave Owen a real personality while also just playing himself. His charm makes this movie special.

Another element that makes this a special film is Connor’s journey. We love teen drama’s because they remind us of our childhood, what we wish we had as a kid, and how relatable they are. This movie checks all three marks off the box due to Connor’s immaculate journey and development as a person. When the film starts, he’s just a kid who hates life and has no self confidence. By the end of the film, he’s taken control of his life while also finally being happy.

A big chunk of the plot revolves around Connor working at the water-park, and this was a great choice by Director’s Nat Faxon and Jim Rash. We all went to substandard water parks growing up, and setting Connor’s summer at the water park was genius. The supporting cast members are staff at the water park (Nat Faxon, Maya Rudolph), and they were a big part of making the water-park charming.

I implore you to see this movie as soon as you can. “The Way, Way Back” checks off all the boxes when it comes to teenage movies. It’s a charming, joyful look at Connor’s journey to happiness. Sam Rockwell as Owen makes it worth the price of a rental alone.

Final Word