A bewitching coming-of-age film, Flirting looks at teenage love and alienation with refreshing authenticity. Free of the syrupy nostalgia and falsely self-assured characters that often define films in this genre, Flirting boasts a script wrought with dry humor and understanding, and thoroughly charming performances from Noah Taylor, awkward and unrepentant as Danny, and newcomer Thandie Newton, resplendent with sass and class as Thandiwe. Also impressive is a young and then-unknown Nicole Kidman, her icy exterior betrayed by a brief yet potent admission of carnal desire. Director John Duigan treats his characters with admirable respect, never stooping to condescension. In so doing, he paints a convincing picture of the struggle to attain adulthood that manages to be both painful and beguiling.
by Rebecca Flint Marx review