Short Term 12 is an independent film directed by Destin Daniel Cretton which examines life in a foster care facility serving teens on what is intended to be a short-term basis. While the movie is a fictional work, it accurately portrays daily life for both the children and the day-time staff. The main characters, Grace (Brie Larson) and Mason (John Gallagher Jr.), a dating couple, are both employees at the facility. Short Term 12 focuses on their relationship, how their pasts and their work at the facility affect them, and ultimately how the children in the facility cause them to look at their own lives. Major, life-altering decisions are made in this documentary-style film which made us (Darren, my mom, and I) laugh and cry out loud. I recommend this movie to anyone working in any capacity with at-risk youth, whether as caregivers, teachers, social workers, or counselors, as it brings you face to face with different types of abuse and the emotional and relational fallout. I do not recommend this movie for children as f-bombs are frequent and subject matter—real life—is heavy.
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