Reviews

While Both Hilarious and Heartwarming, ‘Little’ Sheds an Important Light on the Toll of Bullying – Review

With a cast that boasts the talented Regina Hall, Marsai Martin and Issa Rae, Little is the newest film from Will Packer Productions (Girls Trip, What Men Want), and definitely something you should see this weekend.

With a screenplay written by Tina Golden and Tracy Oliver, Little follows the life of tech mogul, Jordan Sanders (Hall) as she goes through her daily life at the expense of her overworked assistant, April (Rae). While everyone at JSI will agree that Jordan is not the best boss, or best person to get along with, April knows that she has to do whatever it takes to have her ideas and voice heard at JSI. However, when the firm’s biggest client, Connor (Mikey Day) threatens to leave JSI, Jordan’s attitude takes on a whole new level of nastiness. While most of Jordan’s employees try their best to deal with their impatient, overbearing boss – they truly wish that Jordan would change her ways. Not that any of them are willing to tell her that much, or check her behaviour.

Regina Hall as Jordan Sanders in Little (Courtesy of Universal Pictures)

But on this fateful day when a young magician named Stevie (Marley Taylor) catches Jordan being mean to April. Stevie asks Jordan if she’s always been this mean, and to Stevie’s surprise, Jordan tells her that she hadn’t been, but now she was the boss and she’s rich, so “who’s gonna check me, boo?” Stevie raised her wand, and wished for Jordan to be little once again. Jordan feels strange after the encounter but doesn’t dwell on it as she has work to get done. However, the next morning she wakes up in the body of her younger self (Martin), unsure of how or why this is happening to her. Of course, this sets off a chain of hilarious events, including and encounter with Child Services Agent named Bea (Rachel Dratch) who tells April that Jordan has to be enrolled in school, or she’d be going to county jail. Leaving April to run JSI, Jordan heads back to school; a place where some of her worst childhood memories were created.

The movie does a great job at showing the audience just how important kindness is and that when people are unkind, it can take a toll on the person who is experiencing the bullying for a long time to come. Specifically, when the audience gets their first look at young Jordan, she is participating in her school’s talent show where she’s demonstrating a scientific experiment. Of course, the resident bully and popular girl at school has something to say about it, and this is the beginning of the mean older Jordan who is with us for a majority of the film. Not wanting to ever be pushed around again, 13-year-old Jordan decides then and there to become steely and to assert herself. In doing so, she doesn’t care about the lives that she makes difficult along the way, because no one cared about her life being ruined when she was younger. The audience gets to see and explore the reason behind Jordan’s feelings and actions, and while not always right, we do see that past relationships and incidences created the current Jordan who yells at her employees, treats them with disrespect and who in turn, has also become a bully.

Issa Rae as April and Marsai Martin as 13-year-old Jordan Sanders in Little (Courtesy of Universal Pictures)

I can honestly say that I enjoyed everything about this movie. From the casting to the script, every moment and word spoken was truly delightful. All three of the film’s primary actors were great in their respective roles, and the chemistry between Hall and Rae was just as great as Rae’s chemistry with Martin. Hall and Martin should be commended on how seamless the body swap between older Jordan and younger Jordan was. All three had both impeccable comedic timing, while also truly conveying the message of how bullying can have an affect on individuals for many years to come. Both the script and leading ladies saw the importance of this, and while the film is a comedy, at its heart, the film is truly a testament on how things in your past can have a strong effect on you. It can change alter and hinder your relationships, it can make you assume the worst of people, and more.  However, it is up to the individual to try to be a better person in spite of their experiences, and learn to grow into someone who is better than the bullies who have marred their past.

If you want to watch a film with great performances by its leads with a great storyline, be sure to check out Little in theaters now! You won’t regret it.

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