All This Panic
Panorama | Youth | Documentaries | High School Outreach
“If you could go back and start over, knowing everything you know now about high school, would you?” So begins director Jenny Gage’s bittersweet and introspective documentary chronicling the coming-of-age of seven young girls in Brooklyn. Over the span of three years, Gage and her partner, cinematographer Tom Betterton, follow sisters Ginger and Dusty and a small group of their friends and peers as they navigate the tumultuous waters of adolescence and that very particular moment when life starts to offer multiple directions forward.
Smart and vulnerable, all of the girls open up to the camera, sharing their hopes and fears with surprising candour and maturity, and supporting each other through family troubles, doubts about the future and first forays into sexual identity and relationships. Though they are often wise and reflective beyond their years, they are also aware that they are on the cusp of something momentous. Ginger remarks at one point that she is terrified of ageing, and calls it “the scariest thing in the entire world.” The strength and poignancy of All This Panic lie in watching these young women live through an experience both collective and incredibly personal, narrating it all with their own words.
“Astonishing… Gage’s remarkably intimate portrait of female youth on the verge leaves you with a largely hopeful feeling…"—Nigel M. Smith, Guardian