Ty’s review published on Letterboxd:
The Florida Project is one of the most down-to-earth, beautiful portrayals of childhood I've ever seen. This and Tangerine are the only Sean Baker films that I'm familiar with. But both of these movies made it apparent to me that he's a director that I should keep my eyes on.
The visuals here are extremely different than in Tangerine. The Florida Project is shot on 35mm and is filled with so many visually appealing shots. I love how this movie is set in the depressing motel life near Disney. It's clear that Sean is drawn to the idea of showcasing the beauty in things that other people would ignore.
Sean Baker is amazing at getting fantastic performances from first-time or lesser-known actors. Brooklynn Prince is an absolute star in this. Her and the other child actors are beyond believable in their roles. Bria Vinaite, a first-time actor that Sean found on IG, is fantastic as well. Both of them had amazing chemistry together and with Willem Dafoe, who also gave a great performance.
The only negative thing about The Florida Project for me was the ending. I understand what he was going for, but it felt too jarring and out-of-place personally. I think if it cut to black about a couple minutes earlier, the ending would've been much stronger.
The ending didn't ruin the film for me too much. The Florida Project is still a great movie from a talented director. I've seen some people say that the story dragged for them, but I was entertained all the way through. The authentic story and performances definitely kept me interested.