Young Adult (2011)

Detestable and infuriating are just some of the ways you can describe Mavis, who is played by Charlize Theron , in the film “Young Adult”. Not being the noblest of characters, Mavis is a character that the audience will become increasingly unlikable as the film progresses, but yet again, the film has a way of fascinating us with such a character.

Young Adult is a comedy drama film directed by Jason Reitman, which story revolves around Mavis, an alcoholic writer of young adult books, who was once your typical high-school queen. She returns to Mercury, her hometown, in an attempt to reunite with his now-married ex-boyfriend, Buddy Slade, who had just became a father.

Throughout the movie, Mavis over-glorifies her self and tries to put up a fa├žade to make herself look tough when meeting familiar faces who once knew her to be the much popular girl in school. At first glance, we all see Mavis as an over-obsessive and arrogant person, but it is through her conversations with Matt Freehauf that we understand that there is much more to the story.

As the film progresses, we begin to understand Mavis who is likely to have been depressed after events a few events such as her break-up with Buddy, and eventually her divorce with her ex-husband, that drove her into a state of mental instability, where she finally admits to Matt’s sister at the end of the film that she was deeply troubled.

Young Adult falls flat as a comedy, but it truly raises important lessons for us to learn, and is telling us that depression, mental health and alcoholism are very real issues in today’s world.


In this week film’s screening, we watched Young Adult and talked about its main character, Mavis, and discussed if she’s anti-heroine or an unlikable protagonist, letting everyone gain a different perspective of the character. We also discussed how the film relates to issues today such as mental health and alcoholism.

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