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"The Sun is Also a Star" is a beautiful looking film. Its principals, TV stars Yara Shahidi of "grown-ish" and Charles Melton of "Riverdale," are beautiful. Ry Russo-Young's film is shot by cinematographer Autumn Durald with such precision it's impossible not to get a little swoony over the fact that the filmmaker clearly did not phone it in for this adaptation of a popular young adult book.It makes it all the more frustrating, then, that the driving engine behind the film -- a whirlwind 24-hour romance -- is contrived, underwhelming and, perhaps worst of all, unconvincing. Shahidi plays Natasha Kingsley, a high school student whose family is facing imminent deportation to Jamaica. Sadly, notwithstanding the evident care that the filmmaker took, quality-wise it veers more toward the "Serendipity" side of things with a lot of contrivances presented like fate.Despite the implausibility of her character actually agreeing to hang out with this handsome stranger, Shahidi is wonderful as the skeptical, determined Natasha, and is a clear movie star in the making.Melton is not a good fit for Daniel.
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