Meet Chrissa Maxwell. She and her family have just moved, and she has to start at a new school mid-year. Will she fit in? Can she find new friends? On her very first day, Chrissa is seated with three girls who greet her with teasing and tricks. The Mean Bees really know how to stingthey bully her in class, on the bus, online, and even at swim club. Chrissa cant seem to make any new friends; not even with the girl who seems to need a friend the most. When the biggest bully becomes Chrissa's swimming rival, the taunting finally goes too far. Now its up to Chrissa. Will she find a way to stand strong and stop the bullying?
Even in the best of circumstances, being the new kid in school isn't easy--and it's doubly hard when you're the victim of bullying. When Chrissa (Sammi Hanratty) and her family move in with her recently widowed grandmother (Michael Learned), Chrissa is forced to leave her old school (and best friend) and start at a new school in the middle of the school year. An established clique of three girls, dubbed the Mean Bees, welcomes Chrissa by putting her down on her very first day, and their bullying only increases as the days progress. Chrissa suffers in silence as the girls steal her permission slip for swimming club, spread rumors about her having an infectious skin disease, and post inflammatory pictures that dub her the "loser llama girl." Though Chrissa tries hard to make new friends, her efforts are rebuffed even by fellow student Gwen (Kaitlyn Dever), who really seems like she could use a good friend. What Chrissa learns from her experience is that by speaking up, she can protect herself and make a huge difference at her school. Best of all, Chrissa finds some true friends in the process. An American Girl: Chrissa Stands Strong is a quality film about a timely subject that will entertain as well as edify young girls ages 6 and older. --Tami Horiuchi