It’s easy enough to pinpoint when Jennifer Lawrence broke out. Long before American Hustle or the X-Men films or even the Hunger Games series, there was Winter’s Bone. At some point in January of 2010, Lawrence became a bonafide star – or, at least, a star-in-the-making, one to watch – thanks to Debra Granik’s acute study of the kind of hard knock life that few people ever even have a basic awareness of. Lawrence was eventually nominated for an Oscar for her part in the film – her first – and the film picked up nods for Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor (the phenomenal John Hawkes). It was a small-scale indie juggernaut, and it made it clear that Lawrence was someone to watch.
We suspect something similar is about to happen to Devery Jacobs after her turn in Jeff Barnaby’s Rhymes for Young Ghouls. Did you miss the Lawrence bust-out? Don’t make that same mistake twice.
Barnaby’s film, a festival favorite throughout last year, similarly deals with an impoverished community that most of mainstream society has either forgotten about or never really thought too much about anyway. Set on the Red Crow Mi’gMaq reservation in 1976, Rhymes for Young Ghouls explores what happens to young Alia (played in her teen years by Jacobs) becomes a de facto orphan once her mother dies and her hot-tempered dad is sent to prison. Alia is a tough kid, and she eventually becomes the “weed princess of Red Crow” (an actual, awesome line from the film’s official synopsis), using her drug-selling money to pay a “truancy tax” that keeps her out of St. Dymphna’s, the “residential school” where all the young Mi’gMaq are sent until age sixteen. It’s a fragile existence, and it’s one that gets turned on its head after two unexpected changes: the return of her volatile father and the loss of her cash.
Take a look at the film’s first trailer:
Jacobs is absolutely the main event here, and it looks as if she’s poised for her own big break out once Rhymes for Young Ghouls arrives in theaters. She’s got the same scrappy, world-weary outlook that made Lawrence’s role in Winter’s Bone so damn stellar, but she’s also saddled with some additional upheavals (that hair-cutting scene looks to be a tearjerker).
Looking for a new It Girl? Let’s go with Jacobs on this one.
Rhymes for Young Ghouls will open in theaters in late October, with a home video release to follow on November 25th.