Permanent (2017)

44% – Critics
69% – Audience

Permanent Storyline

It’s 1982, and the Dicksons (Jim, Jeanne, and Aurelie) move (are the new-comers) to a southern town where all the girls long for Farrah Fawcett-type curls (to match their back-woods accents/ and love to talk hair./ and obsess over their hair.) Pre-teen AURELIE begs her parents for a permanent, (known outside the south as a perm) hoping for life-changing curly waves but when they take her to a Beauty School instead of a salon to save money, disaster ensues. A bored Student-Beautician accidentally sets the timer for too long, and the perm ends up destroying Aurelie’s already low-grade social life as well as her hair follicles. Aurelie is left as a gawky yet endearing young teenager trying to navigate junior high with what some kids call an afro, then throw things at her, from epithets to dodgeballs.

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Permanent Movie Reviews

Lovely movie

I cannot comprehend the score here. This movie is sweet, funny, and well-done. Please give it a chance.

This is a multi-layered coming of age story. We see all the characters go through changes, learning and growing and maturing. There is a scene near the end featuring a minor character that was absolutely wonderful. If you like indie movies that make you feel happy after, watch this!

starting a new school blues

Fun little indie. Aurelie (kira mcLean) wants a perm, but her parents (patricia arquette and rainn wilson) don’t want to spend that kind of money. So… off to the beauty school, where it won’t cost so much. And it comes out… terrible. But no-one has the guts to say it. The parents mean well… kind of. But they frequently seem to do and say the wrong thing. It doesn’t help that it’s also the first day of school. At a new school. Aurelie is so nice to the students, but is only met with sarcasm and bullying. Can she make friends with the punk kids who act like jerks at that age? Some funny bits, like when her parentals play badminton over the picket fence. And how none of the teachers or other students can get her name right. The only student who gets it right is her friend lydia. It’s a cute little film. Written and directed by colette burson. She won awards for little black boot. During the closing credits, mark cuban is listed as one of the exec producers, but he’s not currently shown on imdb… interesting.

hair thoughts

I doubt that many people have seen Colette Burson’s “Permanent”, but I recommend it. The focus is a girl in 1982 Virginia who wants a perm, but it leads to all sorts of complications in her home life and school life. The movie addresses vanity, or just the general desire to fit in, even at the expense of one’s true identity. The characters are developed enough so that we feel for them, even when they do questionable things. I thought that the dad’s toupee and moustache made him look like Bruce Campbell. Will any of us EVER be content with just our natural hair?

It’s not a masterpiece, but a good piece of work. I hope to see more movies from Ms. Burson in the coming years.