Size 13 Nikes receives huge backlash


Kara Sun

Two Webbies, Kara Sun (‘20) and Helina Zhao (‘20) show off their Nike Air Force.

Tall Girl is a serious movie, despite its infamous tagline: “You think your life is hard? I’m a high school junior wearing size 13 Nikes… men’s size 13 Nikes. Beat that.” From the moment you press play, it is hard to decipher whether or not the movie is a parody of contemporary coming-of age-movies. 

The movie follows the struggles of Jodi Kreyman who is the “tall girl” about six foot one and a half) at her high school. Like many teenage movies, Tall Girl is about overcoming insecurities and being proud of who you are. However, the idea of someone having a hard life just because they are tall seems somewhat ridiculous. 

Considering that Jodi – the protagonist played by Ava Michelle – is white and belongs to an upper middle-class family, the movie is insulting to students who struggle in high school because of poverty, racism, or having a disability. When the trailer for Tall Girl was released, there was a huge wave of backlash on many social media platforms like Tik Tok. 

The director Nzingha Stewart believes there is a deeper meaning behind Tall Girl. In an interview with Refinery 29, when asked what the movie was truly about, Stewart said, “It’s about having an insecurity and having to get over it and learn that the thing you’re ashamed of is the thing that makes you special.” Stewart talks about how the movie emphasizes an everyday adversity that almost everyone can relate to; however, this “deeper message” is hard to find. 

Caroline Metyas (‘20) said, “Tall Girl absolutely sucked. The tagline is extremely offensive because there are actual people who are suffering far worse than she is. I think it’s inconsiderate towards people with real problems.” 

Nika Haleftiras, science department faculty member said, “My roommates were both six foot. A lot of the struggles that they went through, I saw it happen. It does put a spin on things that you see, and I was proud of Jodi accepting herself.”

Although Tall Girl received lots of publicity for its tagline and for the overarching message of “just being confident in one’s self,” Netflix still has popular TV shows like Stranger Things, Big Mouth, and much more. At the end of the day, if you want to sit down and watch a movie that will make you laugh, consider watching Tall Girl. Just make sure not to take it too seriously, and remember Stewart’s message.