posted by FanFic_Girl_26
Vada Sultenfuss (Anna Chlumsky) is an 11-year-old tomboy and a hypochondriac. Vada’s father, Harry Sultenfuss (Dan Aykroyd), is an awkward widower who does not seem to understand his daughter, and as a result, constantly ignores her. His profession as a funeral director, in which the Sultenfuss’ residence is also a funeral parlor, has led Vada to develop an obsession with death as well as disease. Vada also thinks that she killed her own mother, since her mother died two days after giving birth to her.
She regularly tends to her invalid grandmother Gramoo (Ann Nelson), who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease, and whose wandering mind likewise affects her. Harry’s brother Phil (Richard Masur), who lives nearby, also stops by frequently to help out the family.
Vada is teased by other girls because her best friend, Thomas J Sennett (Macaulay Culkin), is unpopular and a boy. Their summer adventures — from first kiss to last farewell — introduce Vada to the world of adolescence.
Vada’s summer begins well. She befriends Shelley DeVoto (Jamie Lee Curtis), the new make-up artist at her father’s funeral parlor, who provides her with some much needed guidance. She is also infatuated with her teacher, Mr. Bixler (Griffin Dunne), and steals some money from Shelley’s trailer to attend a summer writing class that he is teaching.
But before long, things start to fall apart. Her father and Shelley start dating and get engaged, she cannot bring herself to tell her father that she has experienced her first menstrual cycle, Thomas J dies from an allergic reaction to bee stings after finding Vada’s mood ring in the woods, and she finds out that Mr. Bixler is engaged to someone else. Shelly and Harry get into an argument at Thomas J.’s funeral, and Shelly angrily tells Harry that life isn’t just about death, as well as not to ignore the living, especially his daughter.
Vada’s grief, however, manages to do one good thing: mend the rift between her and her father. She learns that her mother’s death two days after her birth wasn’t her fault (since her father tells her that things like mothers dying in childbirth aren’t anybody’s fault; they just happen without explanation). By the end of the movie, Vada has not only managed to deal with her pain and grief, but has also overcome some of her previous issues as well.
If you’re a fan of Macaulay Culkin, then this is the movie for you! :)