When her brother decides to ditch for a couple weeks in London, Viola heads over to his elite boarding school, disguises herself as him, and proceeds to fall for one of her soccer teammates. Little does she realize she's not the only one with romantic troubles, as she, as he, gets in the middle of a series of intermingled love affairs.
After a little white lie about losing her virginity gets out, a clean cut high school girl sees her life paralleling Hester Prynne's in "The Scarlet Letter," which she is currently studying in school - until she decides to use the rumor mill to advance her social and financial standing. Written by
When Brandon asks Olive if she will go out with him, she counters that he had just told her that he was "Kinsey six gay." This refers to a system devised by Indiana University sex researcher Dr. Alfred Kinsey in 1948 by which sexuality is placed on a continuum ranging from zero (exclusively heterosexual with no homosexual) all the way up to six (exclusively homosexual). Kinsey hypothesized based on his research that most people fall somewhere in-between zero and six. See more »
After the scene of Olive and Rhiannon sitting on top of the yellow car, the voice over of Emma Stone says "The next day, things took a turn for the scandalous." yet the very next scene Olive and Brandon are both wearing the exact same clothes from the "previous" day. See more »
Greetings again from the darkness. This is an obvious (and proud of it) homage to the great teen films of John Hughes. It is updated for this generation of teens - replete with FaceBook, texting and webcam. While this one may not have the fully realized characters of the Hughes films, it actually takes things a step further in its commentary on many topics: family life, parenting, religious zealotry, rumor-mongering and the public education system.
Writer Bert V. Royal's script delivers an intellectual and comedic look into high school life ... told through the eyes of the smart, "invisible" girl. Just a brief overview will be offered here so as not to take away from the multiple layers.
Emma Stone ("Zombieland", "The House Bunny") delivers a star-making performance as Olive. Forced into a faux-confession by her best friend, Olive experiences the efficiencies of digital gossip spreading as word leaks regarding the apparent loss of her "V card". Even though this one is based in Ojai, California, it's nice to know that high school promiscuity is still met with a certain stigma. Here that stigma is compared to Hawthorne's expert novel, The Scarlet Letter.
This sets into action a series of unforeseen events. The school's religious nuts, led by Amanda Bynes, take Olive's situation as a personal affront and spend a great deal of effort trying to punish her for her sins. At the same time, the geeks and dweebs view Olive as their savior and proceed to take advantage of the opportunity.
While she is presented as a very sharp-witted, well-grounded teenager, Olive experiences the enormous power of a reputation. All of this is balanced out by her extraordinary relationship with her free-spirited, yet wise parents played by Patricia Clarkson and Stanley Tucci.
I can't possibly do justice to the script or the numerous topics broached, but I will say that it's a welcome new approach to teen movies. The usual schlock sex is replaced by sharp quips and real pressures. Do note that the dialogue is filled with much harsh language that wouldn't be welcome in an environment other than a high school campus. Further support work is offered by Penn Badgley as the good guy, Thomas Haden Church as a new world cool teacher, Malcolm McDowell as an old school principal and Lisa Kudrow as a guidance counselor (in a role that gives me permission to feel the disgust I usually feel when she is on screen).
Don't be scared off thinking this is another lousy teen flick. It is instead an insightful comedy that plays well for adults and teens. While you may not agree with all of the social observations, I believe you will agree the film is presented in a most entertaining and insightful manner.
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