Recently, I was asked to review a film I knew nothing about called BANANA SPLIT. I dug the name so I thought, “Why not?”. Once I started watching it, I realized that this wasn’t the type of film I typically watch but I was left pleasantly surprised. I may go as far as saying BANANA SPLIT has been my favorite experience thus far in 2020.
BANANA SPLIT was directed by Benjamin Kasulke as well as co-written by Hannah Marks and Joey Power. Marks also stars in the film alongside Liana Liberato, Dylan Sprouse, and Luke Spencer Roberts. It’s a coming of age story that takes place during summer. Two teenage girls develop the perfect friendship despite one huge lingering problem: one of them is dating the other’s ex. Nothing bad could come from that…right?
I’m so in love with this coming of age story, it’s beautiful. It perfectly captures one’s reaction to change as well as every kind of relationship you can have. More importantly, it shows how change doesn’t always have to be so scary or permanent. We fear the unknown, but sometimes when we allow ourselves to branch out from our comfort zone, we discover who we really are and who we want to be. It also shows the importance of learning from your mistakes, owning up to them, and growing as a person.
Every girl needs a friendship like the one that develops between April (Hannah Marks) and Clara (Liana Liberato). Although they met through an unfortunate turn of events, there’s no denying they have a unique and kindred friendship. When watching, you almost forget this development happens over a span of one summer, but that’s often how the best relationships happen – within a blink of an eye you can’t imagine a world without that person. Hannah Marks and Liana Liberato deliver charming and emotionally driven performances that will make you smile, laugh, and cry. The same can be said about the relationship between Nick (Dylan Sprouse) and Ben (Luke Spencer Roberts). They both equally gave the film charm, humor, and conflict. Powerful, inspiring performances all around.
Overall, BANANA SPLIT is a smart, well-written story packed full of drama and humor with lovable characters who embrace their flaws and quirks. If you love other coming of age stories like The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Booksmart, and The Edge of Seventeen, you will absolutely love BANANA SPLIT and everything it has to offer. BANANA SPLIT hits Digital and On Demand this Friday, March 27th.