Writer-director Todd Solondz (Welcome to the Dollhouse, Happiness) mines the fertile landscape of suburban American dysfunction in his latest inventive and audacious work, Palindromes. He one-ups Luis Buñuel and Jean-Luc Godard’s conceit of switching actors mid-film by using eight wildly disparate players for the part of Aviva: two adults, four teenage girls, a pre-teen boy, and a six-year-old girl. From black to white, male to female, old to young, fat to thin—this constant transformation forces the audience to examine how its reactions to this story of underage love, need for acceptance, and burgeoning desire are shaped by shifting context. As in a palindrome that mirrors itself on both left and right, this darkly comic tale of middle-class America explores human beings’ capacity for change. 2004, U.S., color, 35mm, 100 minutes.