Video Review: Alessia Cara “Growing Pains”

A beige blanket creases as it unfurls in a warehouse. Alessia Cara stares up at the ceiling while she lies on her round bed, holding some flowers in her hand. She gets up, wearing a nondescript nightgown and walks underneath a tent. She walks in between soldiers slapping their hands together in a pattern.

The tent becomes a hanging blanket in the center of the warehouse. As the warehouse turns dark and lights flash, the soldiers push her head back and then push her into a wheelchair. They lead her to a table. A young woman passes by with a dress. They inspect her and she leaves.

The warehouse darkens again as the curtain spins above. Quick bursts of sunlight blind her for a few moments. She runs. Her shoes and nightgown lie on the floor.

Holding her breath, she kicks her legs as she swims back into the warehouse, wearing a bodysuit. She manuevers her way into a business suit and raises her arms above her.

Rating: 2/5

The first test was fairly simple. Alessia Cara had passed the written section with an A. She celebrated dinner with her parents and younger siblings. However, the ceremony into independence was solitary and made up inspections. The soldiers examined her eyes and hair. They pulled and prodded. She overheard them say she’ll make a man a fine wife and a great mother. They scribble their notes and then lead her to her physical exam.

During her physical exam, she’s told she’s fertile. They smile and tell her she has a bright future ahead of her. She heads for the curtain, hoping to get transported back home. The soldiers march around her, watching. She runs off and is held in the air.

She’s dropped back into the warehouse and puts on a suit. She tries to reach the surface but realizes it’s the final part of the test. She has to search for a man’s help in order to get out. From there, they’ll each pick two buildings. If their home shows up first, she’s a mother.

She gasps for her air as she struggles against the water. Every major choice in her life is being determined now. She hopes for two buildings in a row. She’ll be able to get an education and have a decent career. However, only the upper class teenagers are chosen for it and while she has some money, it may not be enough.

Director: Alan Masferrer Year: 2018

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Pam Avoledo Administrator
Pam Avoledo spends her time binge-watching classic teen dramas and stands firm in her pro-Leyton stance. She also received her journalism degree in 2006 from Oakland University. Her work has been published in the White Wall Review, Sledgehammer Lit , Greatest City Collective & 45 Magazine and forthcoming in Daily Drunk Mag\'s Kristofia anthology.

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