For a brief moment last year, it looked like Jonah Hill might follow in the footsteps of Greta Gerwig, who in 2017 made the leap from popular actor to Oscar-nominated auteur with her semi-autobiographical directorial debut Lady Bird. Hill’s first behind-the-camera effort, Mid90s, is a similarly assured coming- of-age tale, but the film has been shut out of the awards conversation. Essentially a more wholesome riff on Larry Clark’s seminal teen tale Kids, it stars Sunny Suljic as Stevie, a reserved youngster given a crash course in adulthood by a gang of unruly skaters. Hill coaxes naturalistic performances from his cast of novice actors, while relative veteran Lucas Hedges is by turns menacing and pathetic as Stevie’s wannabe bad boy older brother Ian. With a killer soundtrack featuring everything from Nirvana to Nas, the film will strike a particular chord with 1990s kids, but the themes Hill sensitively explores here are timeless.

Mid90s | Directed by Jonah Hill (US 2018) with Sunny Suljic, Lucas Hedges. Starts March 7.

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