“About Scout” is a film about the road trip of 15 years old Scout, who embarks on a journey with a suicidal man, Sam (James Frecheville) to find her little sister, Lulu (Onata Aprile). Of course, it’s not like Lulu disappeared all of sudden. It’s her father who comes after his younger daughter, leaving Scout alone. Now Scout is willing to risk everything in order to reunite with her sibling, but what to do with the police officer, Rod (Danny Glover) who is after her the entire “trip”?
Usually “road trip movies” are filled with constant drama, suspense and nail-biting scenes. However, in Laure Weltz’s film you won’t see that. It’s steady, harmless, and an absolutely charming trip that helps to gather the family together. When we first meet Sam, we find out that he has a trouble to deal with in his life and can’t wait to end it. His mother, Gloria (Jane Seymour) is wealthy and capable of looking after her son. However, the cure comes with not countless doctors or prescribed medicines, but in the form of Scout, who asks him to join her journey across Texas.
Scout is not as lucky as Sam’s family. She does not have much money, and her granny’s (Ellen Burstyn) life is slowly declining. Scout also has trouble to find a school for her four year old sister, Lulu. But one day, when she comes back home, she finds her sister being taken away by her irresponsible father, who on top of everything, can’t control his temper and anger. Even though Sam and Scout met each other before the disappearance of her sister, our heroine approaches Sam with the proposal he found difficult not to refuse.
In “About Scout” you try to see a bit more than the filmmaker offers, but I guess the comfort zone being created in the beginning of the film felt right to let the story flow as it is. It’s India Ennenga, who plays the title girl, who wrote the screenplay along with the filmmaker, Laure Weltz. Once you know that, it allows you to understand the story better, and of course, the inseparable relationship between Scout and Lulu. But there is more in the story than you can imagine. Sam, who I mentioned has a suicidal problem, he, after meeting Scout, all of a sudden blossoms like a sunflower. And if you know about psychological problems the suicidal people go through, good company and attention is the best thing that most of the time can cure people from this terrible state of mind.
In conclusion, “About Scout” is an innocent family drama with solid performances. It shows the importance of the family to be together, even if the actions taken for that are a bit dangerous. It lets the young people to enter a risky path and get away with it. It allows a young man to feel the taste of life at one of the most difficult times of his life. And it’s all because of one young girl who comes as a savior, even though she should have been the one being saved.
“About Sout” opens in Toronto, March 25th
VOD and Digital: March 29