1- Jennifer Stone... I'm not into "Wizards of Waverly Place" so I was pleasantly surprised by how likable she was. And her comic timing was as good as a seasoned pro. Frankly, they should have cast her in the lead. She could have carried the movie and kept the audience more engaged.
2- Meaghan Martin, as the lead protagonist, was a disappointment for me. Her facial expressions and line delivery often made her sound snotty, even in scenes where she was supposed to be friendly! Sometimes she accidentally came off as looking or sounding stuck-up. I think they should have cast her as one of the mean girls. She did not have me rooting for her as much as I should have. That's a BIG negative in a movie like this.
3- Maiara Walsh played the head of the "plastics" and thus is the top mean girl. (If you're over 21, take a shot of whiskey every time she wears a strapless dress in this movie. You'll be sloppy drunk before the halfway point.) She definitely played the part of a spoiled brat very well. Though something about the shape of her face and eyes made her appear softer than the part required. Maybe she and Meaghan Martin should have switched roles?
The rest of the acting was good, in that "cute" sort of way. Nothing to stand up and cheer about but nothing to hurt the movie either.
THE REVENGE FACTOR...
Many pranks are played on the snobs. One of them gets vomited on. Another gets her face dyed green. Etc. But somehow the scenes don't work very well. Maybe because the characters don't seem properly humiliated by the pranks. I mean, your face is dyed green and you're reacting like it's only a minor inconvenience? She's more concerned about getting a ride to school than with what the other students are going to say about her green face! Thus the prank falls flat. Yet we're told it was a success.
And the girl who gets vomited on (I won't say who gets it) reacts the way you'd expect... she's grossed out! But there's not a lot of laughter or even any comments from the crowd that witnesses it. People should at least be going, "Ewww" and pointing. If you're going to pay a bunch of teenagers to be extras in a movie, make them earn it! Tell them to REACT. Getting vomited on at a crowded party should have some lasting social ramifications. In this movie, however, one gets the feeling that everyone will forget about it after a few seconds.
The final comeuppance (which I won't give away) works to a certain degree. At least justice is served. Unfortunately it seems to come too easy and feels clichéd. I recalled similar endings in other movies ("Cruel Intentions," to name just one.)
Most of the comedy in Mean Girls 2 is "cute humor"... It's never hilarious. Rarely will you laugh out loud. Mostly you will just smile. I think some of the comedy was probably funny on paper but something always spoils it. Sometimes it's poor timing. Sometimes it's an over emphasis on cuteness. Often it's because the tone is simply too over-the-top to feel like any of this is happening to real people. To be fair, the original movie had the same problem.
I just don't buy into the notion that 3 girls could have an entire student body shaking in their boots. Simply portraying the mean girls as bullying snobs would be fine. That would work. Why do movies like this always feel the need to go over-the-top and make the mean girls out to be more feared than the Nazi Party in 1938 Germany? It doesn't increase the comedy. It just feels corny.
CONCLUSION: This movie will have many haters. The title "Mean Girls 2" will generate enough curiosity that many people will watch it. But those who loved the original will probably hate this sequel automatically. And those who don't care about the original won't care about this one either.
Having said all that, it's really not a bad movie. There are some good ideas... They're just presented in a very mediocre way. I didn't love it. I didn't hate it. I'm just, "eh" about the whole thing. And I suspect the director was too. She did a great job with the film, "She Gets What She Wants" but seemed to lack that same spark here.
I wanted to have fun but found myself constantly saying, "Oh if only they had done it THIS way or THAT way, it would be way better."