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The Improper Bostonian

Three Stars
Paul Sherman

This unassuming independent drama earns a place alongside such other standout small-town coming-of-age movies as "Breaking Away� and "Ruby in Paradise." Lauren Ambrose (of "Can�t Hardly Wait and TV�s "Six Feet Under") is terrific as an 18-year-old tomboy who, over the course of a summer at the beach town of Myrtle Beach, S.C., navigates her way through several crossroads in life, including a cooling relationship with her childhood best friend (Jennifer Dundas Lowe) and flirtations with both a sexually forward female coworker (Joelle Carter) and a weird drifter (Jamie Harrold). As with the best coming-of-age movies, her triumphs are small ones that let her be more comfortable in her own skin. (At Kendall Square)

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