Drama/Romance, 1 hr 39 min
Log line: Nora has her own way of looking at the world, and when she meets Romy, she realizes why.
Cocoon accurately captures the highs and lows of adolescence with no sugar-coating but with pure artistic storytelling.
Like puberty itself, this film puts you on an unexpected emotional rollercoaster ride that hits you hard in some places and makes you soft in others. The fact is, we are all on our own journeys of self-discovery. Every day we can learn something new, every day we can fall or triumph, and every day can define our lives. Cocoon captures the essence of coming-of-age–that period in one’s life when your perspective of the world changes, when you undergo physical changes and have spiritual awakenings.
Turns out a lot can happen during one sweltering-hot summer in Berlin, and for Cocoon, ‘a lot’ would be an understatement. This film dares to expose the youth of today for all its recklessness, insecurities, vulnerability, and internal struggles. Cocoon follows a 14-year-old girl named Nora as she tags along with her older sister Jule and her best friend Aylin. All three are navigating through school life, peer pressure, the generation’s obsession with body image, the fear of being embarrassed, and that burning desire to love and be loved. Through the eyes of Nora and the multiple complex characters whom she encounters, the audience is gifted with a raw, unadulterated view of what it can feel like to: live under someone’s shadow, to struggle with your sexuality and identity, to have your first period at the most inconvenient of times, to have broken parental figures not be there when they are needed most, to discover first-love and be heartbroken, and despite all the above, to grow into a stronger version of yourself.
Cocoon unapologetically delves into the lives of youngsters at the age where they are most vulnerable, and yet, bravest; daring to love and be heartbroken, to go skinny dipping and have to run away butt naked, and to see beauty in what others may consider ordinary or repulsive. The imagery of the plastic bag shimmering gloriously underwater or the caterpillar growing magnificently into a butterfly are perfect parallels to how Cocoon shows a seemingly average shy 14-year-old girl blossoming into a more self-assured and independent young lady.
Whilst the delivery of all the characters and themes are a little too relentless and cold for my liking, Nora’s self-discovery and emotional and physical journey is truly remarkable to behold. It feels deeply honest and relatable, and it goes on such a trajectory that it ends up being inspirational and life-affirming. The film reminds us that certain memories can shape a person for the rest of their lives, and that self-realisation can be both beautiful and uplifting. Cocoon accurately captures the highs and lows of adolescence with no sugar-coating, but with pure artistic storytelling.
Watch the trailer
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Reviewer & Writer
Ping believes in the power of love and kindness, and that "love is love" no matter what shape or form it comes in. She would like to see positive representation for all walks of life in film and media.