New Netflix original raises awareness for bullying


Official Netflix website

“Tall Girl” has been available on Netflix since Sept. 13. The Daily Dot also recommends watching it as Brenden Gallagher wrote, “This funny, self-aware rom-com reminds viewers that experiencing alienation doesn’t make you special or weird. It just makes you a teenager.”

Morgan Tropf, Staff Writer

Over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year and appearance is cited as the number one aggressor of bullying.

“Tall Girl” on Netflix is a powerful story about a girl overcoming these odds.

The drama is an outstanding production highlighting the internal struggles many high schoolers face due to bullying. The film sends an excellent message to high schoolers, as the insecure 6’1” protagonist, Jodi, battles her insecurities of being the tall girl in school.

Jodi has always been bullied in school because of her height. When a tall exchange student (Stig) moves in town, Jodi wants to catch his attention and not because of her height.

Jack Dunkleman, who has been in love with Jodi for years, is housing Stig during his stay in the United States. Dunkleman is frustrated with the attention that Jodi is giving to Stig, who is already dating the popular girl in school.

Stig and Jodi hit it off well and he was not fazed by her height. But, word gets out that he is only using Jodi. After Jodi regains her confidence, she gave an inspiring speech at the homecoming dance leaving Stig starstruck.

Jodi showcases true resilience when Stig comes running back to her, leading to a very heartfelt ending.

Junior Abby Coffin can relate to this film because at 5’7½“ she has been called “giraffe” by various classmates. Coffin said, “I feel like I stand out because a lot of my friends are short or medium height so compared to them I look even taller.”

It was touching when Jodi finally became confident in herself despite her appearance. The speech Jodi gave at homecoming left viewers with an important message: that it is okay to be different and that you should embrace these differences.

Similar to Jodi, Coffin has learned to accept and embrace her height. Coffin said, “I wish other girls knew that being a tall girl is not a bad thing. It’s fun because I don’t have to rely on anyone to get stuff down for me. Everyone should express themselves for their differences.”

Ava Michelle was a perfect actress to display Jodi. Michelle did a great job portraying Jodi’s emotions throughout the story through her interactions with both herself mentally and other students in school. Moreover, this helped showcase her insecurities throughout the first half of the movie.

Another actor that stood out was Griffin Gluck who played Jack Dunkleman. He did an outstanding job showcasing his love for Jodi throughout the movie. He acting displayed the personality shift as he grew frustrated that Jodi was interested in Stig instead of him.

This film did an impeccable job showcasing the presence of bullying in school and how that makes the victim feel. Each night after leaving school, Jodi would still be pressured by the comments students made about her throughout the day.

Another unique addition to the film was when Jodi considers height reduction surgery. Reading these stories made her question why she can’t just be normal. This highlights how hurt a person must be to go that far just to fit into society.

One critique I have for this film is the lack of social media usage. In our technological society, cyberbullying is very prominent. This film lacked that aspect of bullying.

A movie with a similar message and plot to “Tall Girl” is “Sierra Burgess is a Loser.” They are both coming of age dramas about an underdog in high school overcoming their odds. Netflix has been incorporating more of these motivational films into its streaming service in hopes of inspiring high schoolers to be themselves.

I gave this film a rating of four out of six feet tall because of the lack of social media usage. Besides that aspect, the movie brought a lot of attention to self-consciousness and bullying which is often overlooked in schools. This film offered an inspirational message that every teenager should hear.

Title: Tall Girl 

Run time: 102 minutes 

Starring: Ava Michelle, Luke Eisner, Sabrina Carpenter, Griffin Gluck, Paris Berelc and more

Director: Nzingha Stewart

Producer: McG

Rating: TV-13 for mild cursing 

Genre: comedy, drama

IMDb rating:  5.6/10

My rating: 4/6 ft tall

Fun fact: Jodi’s character is only three inches taller than Gigi Hadid, two inches taller than Taylor Swift, and just 1½ inches taller than Cole Sprouse.