Spontaneous isn’t your typical teen rom-com.
But then, your typical teenagers don’t have to deal with their friends spontaneously combusting.
When students in the senior class start inexplicably exploding, Mara (Katherine Langford) and Dylan (Charlie Plummer) struggle to survive in a world where every moment may be their last.
Check out our review of Spontaneous below.
Spontaneous triumphs on every level, from the unique premise laced with dark humor down to the treatment of its characters.
First, the story itself is refreshingly original. But even with the fantastic premise of spontaneous combustion, the plot focuses on the very real struggles and emotions this provokes in the senior class. (Like they don’t have enough to worry about trying to get into college – now they have to think about possibly blowing up without warning.) It keeps the whole thing grounded.
Plus, the relationship between Mara and Dylan feels very believable. Langford and Plummer have great chemistry. Mara and Dylan share a weird, off-beat sense of humor. And their “meet-cute” moment is appropriately unusual, but still strangely endearing. In short, they’re charming to watch.
It’s also refreshing to see a teen romance manage its other relationships so well. Even after Mara starts seeing Dylan, she maintains a strong relationship with her best friend Tess. Mara also has a good relationship with her parents – something you rarely see in a coming-of-age story.
And of course, Spontaneous is also just really funny. It’s got a dark humor that feels appropriately Gen-Z and feeds back into the premise. These teens are simultaneously terrified of what’s happening to their peers and cracking jokes about dying to cope. When a government official turns up with a Powerpoint presentation offering thoughts and prayers for the exploding class, the teens laugh in his face. (As they should.)
Of course, it’s also vaguely ominous to watch the government and health officials struggle to stop teens from spontaneously combusting given the current state of the world. Sometimes unreality is a little too real (or vice versa).
The Bottom Line
Spontaneous is darkly funny, heartfelt, and genuinely unique, easily outpacing other teen movies. This one is a must watch.