A triangle of teenage crushes connects two girls and a guy in this engaging high school dramedy. Ellie Chu (Leah Lewis) is a queer straight-A student with a habit of doing her classmates’ homework for cash so she can help her dad out with the bills at home. She spends her classes looking longingly across the room at the beautiful Aster Flores (Alexxis Lemire), but she hasn’t found the right words to express her admiration. When a football player, Paul (Daniel Diemer), approaches Ellie to ask for help writing Aster a love letter, she’s conflicted, but she needs the money and agrees to coach him. As their flirtatious letters progress to texts, Ellie’s wordsmithery skills win Aster over. Agreeing to meet up with Paul in person, Aster finds herself confronted with a complicated situation where nothing is quite what it seems.
Writer and director Alice Wu (Saving Face) imbues both a feelgood quality and a tender authenticity to this coming-of-age take on Cyrano de Bergerac. Leading lady Leah Lewis (Nancy Drew) wins over the audience in her own clumsy, charming way as she attempts to learn the art of love and romance.—Lucy Mukerjee
Alice Wu is a Chinese-American film director and screenwriter. After earning a master’s degree in computer science at Stanford University, she designed software at Microsoft before becoming a full-time filmmaker. Her debut feature, Saving Face, debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival. Her script for The Half Of It was a 2018 Black List selection.