This is one of the best stories ever to cross my desk. It is a realistic world inhabited by genuine characters facing some relevant coming-of-age issues. Because we are following flawed people, key issues like abortion and freedom of speech are addressed with honesty instead of rhetoric.
My teen age daughter said, “This is the only Christian film you [Papa] have ever worked on that I would recommend to my friends.” That is high praise indeed.
The music is a hybrid of custom score and contemporary music. In keeping with Tom Simes’ (Director) vision of telling a purely honest story, I was challenged to mix the music in such a way that it didn’t “tell the audience” how to feel, but rather discovered emotions along with the viewer. Since much of the music was from bands like Toby Mack, FANCY, Moriah Peters, and For King and Country, editing to fit was a challenge.
Sometimes I feel the need to shape and mold dialog to accent emotions or beats in the edit. In this case I resisted the urge to sculpt. The acting is very good and I wanted to allow the voices to stand, like their characters, exposed and alone in the spotlight. I think the result is a vicarious experience that resonates with young audiences.