Kristy Guevara-Flanagan, Dawn Valdez
Year of Release
Going On 13 shows us a reality far more complex than what we are used to seeing in the media about pre-teen girls and urban girls of color. Without simplifying or sensationalizing their lives, we come to see these four girls as multi-faceted and gripping individuals.
Using a mix of intimate interviews, cinema vérité, and stop-motion animation, Going On 13 chronicles the girls’ coming of age: their blossoming desires and growing sense of responsibility, their hopes for the future, their difficulties learning how to love themselves, and the escalating tug-of-war between who they want to become and who their parents think they should be. We hear the girls talk about themselves. They take us into their world, with the music, television, digital media and books they adoringly ingest — and that rarely reflect their own families’ economic or cultural backgrounds — providing texture, context, and contrast for the social and emotional challenges they face.