‘Struck by Lightning’ flashes brilliant message

Struck by Lightning flashes brilliant message

Chioma Iheoma, Opinion Editor

Get a bolt of inspiration from writer and actor Chris Colfer’s film, “Struck by Lightning.”  The fresh take on the typical coming-of-age story is one you should see.

“Struck by Lightning” is narrated by the main character, Carson Phillips (Chris Colfer).  Carson lives with his alcoholic mother (Allison Janney) who becomes dependent on anti-depressants after her husband walks out on her while Carson is a child. Although he’s an outcast in high school, Carson is sarcastic, intelligent, and bold.  He’s stuck with big dreams in a small town.  All of these dreams are cut short when he is struck by lightning and killed.

Carson is killed within the first two minutes of the film, so he narrates his life in the months leading up to his sudden death.  He deals with an inexperienced writing club, an unpopular school newspaper, and his alcoholic mother all while attempting to get into his dream school, Northwestern University.

Carson’s death so early on in the film makes his coming-of-age story tragic.  However, it only enhances the message of the film.  As he reflects on his death he talks about how he lived for tomorrow instead of the present.  All teenagers should hear this message.

Colfer’s acting is stupendous and genuine, which makes the character easily relatable.  While Colfer has some advantage playing a character he created, other characters such as Malerie (Rebel Wilson), April (Christina Hendricks), and Neal (Dermot Mulroney) all seemed candid in their portrayals, making the plot seem more real.

Director Brian Dannelly and Cinematographer Bobby Bukowski do an amazing job making the movie seem less like fiction and more like something that happens to all of us.  There is nothing distracting about the cinematography of the film, so the message of the movie, focusing on the present, remains the main emphasis.

Sometimes people need to be struck by something to reevaluate their outlook on life.  “Struck by Lightning” is a film that teenagers and adults alike should see.  The film is set to release in select theaters starting on Jan. 11.  However, the closest theater is in New York City.  “Struck by Lightning” can be purchased on Netflix as well as iTunes and Comcast OnDemand for $6.99 and Amazon Instant Video and Vudu for $5.99.

Chioma Iheoma is an Opinion Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.