American Honey is a bullshit movie, that is awful to look at, ridiculously long, and barely a story. It's edited well; that's the nicest thing I can say. The picture is crisp but the colors have that green glow of early DV. I assume critics are embracing it because they've forgotten what a great movie looks like. There are dozens of coming of age stories about misspent youth: Breathless, Jules and Jim, Midnight Cowboy, American Graffiti, The Last Picture Show, The Breakfast Club, Heathers, St. Elmo's Fire, School Daze, Dazed and Confused, Clueless, Heavenly Creatures, Y tu Mama Tambien, Napoleon Fucking Dynamite...and those are just off the top of my head. All of those films and the myriad others we could list if we brainstormed have merit, some of them are extraordinary.
American Honey feels improvised. It meanders. It isn't plot driven but it doesn't have any characters that are interesting or complicated enough to drive the 3 fucking hours of adolescent depravity. These kids are all criminals. They use fraud to con stupid (really fucking stupid) people out of pennies for magazine subscriptions then commit petty larceny when they get into their homes. The premise that a rag tag group of teenagers wreaking of booze and pot and looking like hoodlums (which they are) knocks on people's doors or approaches people in parking lots and sells them magazine subscriptions is RIDICULOUS. Maybe 20 years ago, but not today. Who the fuck is going to open their door to a man with a giant mullet braid wearing thrift store castoffs? Not many folks.
I hate this movie. I hope the hard drives housing all of the "prints" get destroyed in a fire.