I Am Eleven
- Director:Genevieve Bailey
- Release Date:July 05, 2012
- Distributor:Proud Mother Pictures
- Running time:93 minutes
- Film Worth:$15.00
- FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth
An insightful, funny and touching doco which refreshes the idea that young people have something to say – and it’s worth listening to.
Being eleven-years-old is a curious in-between point in life, an age when you're no longer a child but not quite a teenager, momentarily caught in a kind of pre-adolescent limbo. Genevieve Bailey, director of the feature length documentary, I Am Eleven, remembers being eleven-years-old as her favourite age, representing a time when things were happier, and when life was still yet to be defined. To investigate this curious age, one so often overlooked on screen, Bailey embarked on a journey spanning fifteen countries, meeting kids from all around the world to find out just what it means to be eleven-years-old today.
Presented mainly through informal conversations touching on a range of themes, the film is essentially a series of intimate portraits, moving between topics and countries seamlessly. It's beautifully filmed and edited, and while Bailey isn't necessarily an overt presence in I Am Eleven, there is a real sense of her personality and personal discovery throughout the documentary. But the key to the film's success clearly lies in the personalities of the kids themselves. They are all engaging, natural, and at ease with expressing themselves, ensuring that I Am Eleven is an incredibly poignant, funny and optimistic film.
Reminiscent of Spellbound and the 7 Up series, there's an implicit trust between the subjects and the filmmaker which elevates the documentary. The thoughts and ideas captured are sometimes profound and often hilarious, but ultimately what comes to the fore is that eleven-year-olds have ideas worth listening to. It's rare to ever see an eleven-year-old asked their opinion on complex issues such as love, war, racism or the environment, and these kids really relish the opportunity to express themselves. It's the surprising and often refreshing responses elicited on screen that are exactly what makes I Am Eleven such an insightful and enjoyable film.