Bring It On (2000)
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The screenplay is intelligent and very funny and aside from a slow stretch or two, I really liked the movie. It is not like "Clueless" or anything else, which of course is a good thing.
One of my favorite scenes is when Cliff and Torrance (Kirsten Dunst) are brushing their teeth. Its probably a throw-away scene and there is no dialogue, but it was really great, for me at least.
The plot is simple. It's like Rocky. Or Varsity Blues. Or any other sports movie you've ever seen. New captain of the five time national cheerleading champions Toros, Torrance (Kirsten Dunst) is shocked when the new girl on the squad (Eliza Dushka), a gymnast, tells her that all of the routines that made the squad famous were stolen from an inner city school in East Compton, two hours up the coast. Determined to prove that they can do it themselves, the Toros go through a fairly short journey to self-empowerment. There's a pounding bass line, lots of teens in short skirts, some fun flipping, and a lesson about being true to yourself and believing in others.
The film also takes on any number of myths about cheerleaders. Are male cheerleaders all gay, or do they just like grabbing girls' rears? The answer, of course is a little from column A and a little from Column B. Are cheerleaders all airheads? Well, the issue of whether or not these girls go to class is done away with in two minutes at the beginning of the film. From that point on, education, books, and homework are never mentioned. Any occasional signs of intelligence are held up to ridicule, though these "sweater puppets" are all quick with a witty retort, so they must have something going on upstairs. And finally, is cheerleading a sport? Well, this film comes out firmly on the side of yes.
For all of its verve, Jessica Bendinger's script is too reductive for the movie to be taken very seriously. The white girls are obviously upper scale and spoiled. Naturally the white girls don't have any sass at first and naturally they borrow it from their African-American neighbors. The black girls are supposed to be poor. Not that that's really depicted in this day-glo colored world.
In fact, through the wonders of Hollywood Central casting, the squad from East Compton actually looked even more racially homogenous than the "Buffys" from San Diego. This is an inner city high school that has a cheerleading squad featuring a dozen girls with identical light complexions and straight hair. The racial assumptions at work here would be offensive if the movie placed any premium on reality. Instead, as directed by Peyton Reed, everything is colorful, glossy, and easy on the eyes. The intricate cheerleading routines are mostly shot from strange angles or awkward close-ups to make it impossible to tell if the cast is actually doing any of the cheering stunts at all.
When Kirsten Dunst makes good small movies (see The Virgin Suicides or Dick), nobody goes to them. So I suppose it's fitting that this movie was a smash. She's always an entertaining screen presence and for now she's still young enough that it isn't ridiculous for her to keep playing high school characters. How her career progresses as she matures remains to be seen. The rest of the cast seems like they were picked from the set of a WB series. Now since I kind of like a number of WB series, I don't mean this as an insult in any way. The Warner Brothers network has proven a good training ground for attractive young women to read catchy dialogue and everybody in Bring It On seems very skilled with the zingers. And as the aforementioned Sparky the choreographer, Ian Roberts is just hilarious and his scene is easily the funniest part of the movie.
In the end, Bring It On is fairly satisfying. It's also amusing to note the strange directions that this movie is able to stretch the limits of the PG-13 rating in terms of language and certain forms of implied sexuality. But that's neither here nor there. Bring it On gets a not-to-be-ashamed-of 6/10 from me.
A film about cheer leading, something that is, as far as I know, a uniquely American phenomenon, sounds pretty cheesy. The remarkable thing is that the acting and dialogue raise it a bit above the minimum required and the cheer leading dance sequences are a revelation for anyone who thought it was just about waving arms in the air and shouting support for the football team.
Gabrielle Union (10 Things I Hate About You) and Kirsten Dunst (Drop Dead Gorgeous & Virgin Suicides) were both cheerleaders at school - did this help with the authenticity? The amazing routines are quite dazzling to watch - requiring a very high level of stamina, physical fitness, athletic ability and dance technique. The overhead panning brings them almost to the level some of the old song and dance movie scenes with synchronized dancing. Synchronized dance in itself is difficult stuff, but fast paced synchronized dancing (to a great soundtrack, by the way) involving major aerial throws, difficult jive moves and lots of personality thrown in, is quite an achievement.
The film never takes itself too seriously, from the football announcer who says at the end of the match, "our next defeat is scheduled for next Tuesday", to the out-takes while the credits roll, the attitude is firmly tongue in cheek.
The script includes plenty of teenage bitching reminiscent of Clueless (adolescents often seem to show their intellectual prowess at clever, and often vicious repartee, that is all par for the course), but the acting is convincing and even the awkward issues of race and homosexuality are handled well. One cannot but help congratulate them for making a good film out of such a flimsy premise.
The quest here is the national cheerleader championships held each year in Orlando, Florida. In real life, the young competitors are tiny, thin-legged kids with braces. In BRING IT ON, all of the cheerleaders are fully developed amazingly nice looking So-Cal starlets. The result is eye candy perfection!
BRING IT ON has the right mix of good-natured fun and old fashioned sex appeal. A bikini car wash. Pajama sleep-overs. Cheerleader pom-poms every place! Each actress's smile lights up the darkest of nights. Pure American fun.
Speaking of fun, please don't miss the ending credits. BRING IT ON is an instant modern day classic that stands up to repeated viewings. Highly recommended for what it is.
I love this film and I always will, it is my favorite film of all time. At least it is much better than they are teen comedy this days. Jessica Bendinger wanted to mix cheerleading and hip-hop, the two tastes that taste great together, it's like peanut butter and chocolate, which she did. The choreography very beautiful, the dance moves were pretty good and amazing.
Long before "Pitch Perfect" became a hit franchise and every group of women became our #squadgoals, there were the Toros and the Clovers. Fifteen years ago this month, Universal released "Bring It On" into theaters, a low budget, high-school comedy about rival cheerleading teams that spawned four spin off films, a stage musical, and helped pave the way for the Barden Bellas, the McKinley glee club and many more The plot of the film centers on Torrance Shipman (Kirsten Dunst), who inherits the position of captain on her high school's cheerleading squad and attempts to lead her team to a sixth national title. However, Torrance is informed by the newest team member, Missy Pantone (Eliza Dushku), that she is in possession of a stolen routine. When the originators of the work vow to win, Torrance and her squad must go to different lengths in order to create an original performance.
The Toro cheerleading squad has spirit, spunk, sass and a killer routine that's sure to land them the national championship trophy for the sixth year in a row. But for newly-elected team captain, Torrance (Kirsten Dunst), the Toro's road to cheer glory stumbles when she discovers their perfectly choreographed routines were stolen from a hot hip-hop squad across town. Now the squad must scramble to find a new routine to compete in this year's competition.
I love this movie and I am not saying that as a blonde or a cheerleader! No offense : / This is the best Bring It On movie out of all of them. Kirsten Dunst in an amazing actress. This movie is funny, very cute, and the original Bring It On!
At Rancho Carne High School, cheerleading is everything to student Torrance (Kirsten Dunst), who aching to be named head cheerleader of school squad the Toros, continuing the aggressive pursuit of dominance started by graduating member, Big Red (Lindsay Slone). Requiring a new cheerleader to help fill a gap caused by an accident, the squad welcomes Missy (Eliza Dushku) to the team, though the new student isn't sure her cynical ways are a good fit, while her brother, Cliff (Jesse Bradford), welcomes the assimilation, attracted to Torrance and her indefatigable spirit. When she realizes routines established by Big Red are actually stolen from the East Compton Clovers, led by icy Isis (Gabrielle Union), Torrance loses confidence, requiring support from the splintered Toros and outside influences as she attempts to rebuild what was lost.
Director Peyton Reed and screenwriter Jessica Bendinger (who tried to reheat her formula for 2006's "Stick It") favor bigness when it comes to the antics contained in "Bring It On." Summoning blinding cheerleading spirit, the production turns the quest for trophies into a cartoon, complete with aggressive close-ups and screamed line readings, while the writing retains finger-snap timing and an interest in developing its own vocabulary (e.g. Torrance demanding that the Toros are not a "cheerocracy"), always on the go in terms of characterization and plotting (a mid-movie detour with the Toros and a professional choreographer harboring an obsession with "spirit fingers" is amusing).
The rating I am giving is 10/10 for been Entertained sport film. The film isn't perfect, it has flaws. The Toros cheerleading squad should have win on the end of the film and they didn't. That move hurt the film. In all the sequels all cheerleading squad team won in this film they didn't. The film is good because of Kirsten Dunst. Believe it or not, it's been 15 years since everyone's favorite campy cheerleader movie, Bring It On, debuted. Kirsten Dunst, aka captain Torrance Shipman, appeared on The Late Late Show With James Corden last night and talked about her first major lead role. "None of us knew it would become a hit," she says. "We were just a couple of young people in San Diego making a Universal film no one cared about.
10/10 Grade: A Studio: Beacon Communications Starring: Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, Jesse Bradford, Gabrielle Union, Clare Kramer Director: Peyton Reed Producers: Marc Abraham, Thomas Bliss Screenplay: Jessica Bendinger Rated: PG-13 Running Time: 1 Hr. 38 Mins. Budget: $10.000.000 Box Office: $68,379,000
'Bring it on' falls into neither of these traps, but is aware that its genre is exhausting itself, and raises a number of pertinent issues. do filmmakers, like the Toro cheerleaders, continue their success by ripping off others' tricks? Is it possible to be original any more, or is the best we can hope for a clever spin on older, wider sources (this, of course, applies to cinema and all art in general)? Most pertinent, and 'Road Block' had already touched on this, is it time we jettisoned the toothy, white, middle-class young, and their oh-so-harrowing traumas, and allow a more representative teen demographic into the tacitly racist genre?
'Bring it on' may not entirely escape this last accusation - the black cheerleaders have no real humanity of their own, we are not given the same insight into their backgrounds and personalities as the white girls, beyond catch-all under-privilege. They are a mirror in which the whites can examine their complacency or flaws and correct them - literally so in many scenes, where the whites 'reflect' the blacks' movements, and the latter distort them in return, thereby commenting on them.
However, this touchy racial subject matter has a major benefit on the narrative arc. The plot is the old stand-by: a team of underdogs against the odds, triumph against circumstances and expectations. This would be tiresomely formulaic, except there are two teams in the film with equal claims on our attention and sympathies - it would be unthinkable for a Hollywood film today to have poor black people lose against pampered whites, but every stylistic decision - the humanising of characters; the rites of passage and socialising-of-misfits narrative; screen-time etc. - favours these whites. This creates a genuine tension, added to little asides (such as Torrence's brother's T-shirt, 'Cheerleading = Death') that make a familiar narrative interesting, problematic and unpredictable.
This is not to deny the familiar pleasures of the genre - the beautiful, clothes-shy young stars (the film gets to leer and satirise such leering!); the witty dialogue and bitchiness; the screenplay sharp about traditional issues of power and community; revelatory, stylised dreams and memories; the unforced energy. 'Bring it on' is a rare instance in the last few decades of a musical, and the various cheerleading routines are exhilerating and inventive, revealing to many a hitherto hidden purpose of a much maligned group, while still retaining the right to tongue-hollow that cheek. (AND a Shakespearean finale, where the actors come back after the curtain, and show us it was all play).
Overall, I thought it was a lot of fun and I left the film feeling good!
Fine support from:Pua Kapiolani, Tsianina Joelson, Clare Kramer and Nicole Bilderback. If you have a cheerleader fetish, you will think this romp deserves an Oscar. Nonetheless enjoyable.
By far, the best actresses in this film has to be Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, and Gabrielle Union. They really made the film what it was, and they were all perfect for the part.
My only criticism is that there was little need for the character of Cliff (Played by Jesse Bradford). It took the movie away from it's main point of cheer-leading. Though I liked the tension between him and Dunst, it wasn't really needed.
I never got a chance to see the sequel, but I'm sure that it isn't better than the original.
The thing I find the most amazing about Torrenance is that she was not only willing to give everyone and anyone a chance, but she also encouraged Missy to join the squad. I love cheerleading and movies about it, and this is one of the best ones out there. Missy is an awesome cheerleader, who takes Carvert's place when she falls and breaks her leg during the school year's first cheerleading practice. I think that she was great as a cheerleader. Kudos to the cast, crew and filmmakers. Two Thumbs Way Up!
The plot... well the 5 time national champion cheerleaders from Rancho Carne High School in San Diego (they're the Toros) find out that all their award winning cheers were actually stolen from the cheerleaders at East Compton High (they're the Clovers). So now if they want to keep their championship dreams alive, they need to come together as a team and create their own, original cheer, and cheer like they've never cheered before. Lead by their captain Torrance Shipman (Kirsten Dunst), the Toros make it back to the national championships, and go head to head with the Clovers to see who really is the best darn cheerleaders in the country. Yes, the plot is cheesy, but I think that was going to be a very obvious thing from the beginning. The movie is about cheerleading after all. Not that I have anything against cheerleaders, but a movie that centers around the trials and tribulations of cheerleaders is not going to have a serious and deep story. The dialogue was appropriately bad and yes, cheesy enough to make you wish that it were serious and deep. However when you have the bright, peppy and beautiful Dunst in the lead, how can you not smile and cheer right along with all of them?
Also along for the ride, one of my personal favorite actresses, the not-yet-but-soon-to-be-popular Eliza Dushku, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer fame. In my book, she's right up there as far as looks go. She plays Missy, the hardened transfer student who joins the cheerleading squad only because the school doesn't have a gymnastics program. Making her start off as a bad-ass, then saying she was a gymnast didn't feel right to me. But she comes around pretty quickly and she and Torrance become fast friends. Also, since this is a teen dramedy, Torrance and her off to college boyfriend have problems, and Missy's brother Cliff is right there to help Torrance out with all her cheerleader angst. OK, so obviously the only reasons any guy would go see this movie is because either his girlfriend dragged him along, or because he wants to see a bunch of girls in cheerleader outfits, and tight clothing. And really, can you blame him? The girls are attractive, and putting them into various stages of dress, and undress, certainly can't hurt the grosses. Locker room scenes, bikini car wash scenes, and of course the cheerleading scenes were worth the price of admission for me (which of course was only $3.75, one of the perks of living in suburbia).
The soundtrack was pretty cool, and the dance/cheerleading sequences were actually quite well done. And the fact that the movie never wavered from its position that to these girls (and some guys) cheerleading was very important. To a majority of us who have never cheerleaded, it's easy to say that it's not anything to get worked up about, but I look at it like if you said that to a football player in a Texas high school, you'd probably be shot on sight. Cheerleading is important to the cheerleaders, and that's what this movie was about. Cheerleading. And hot girls in cheerleading outfits. Sorry, I am a guy afterall.
So overall, yes Bring It On is cheesy with some over the top dialogue. But it also has some good music, some good cheerleading scenes, and of course, it has the girls. It's not something that is going to be heard over the microphone at next years Academy Awards, but I thought it was just good summer fun.
Spirited picture about cheer leading? Well yes it is, it's witty, smart and ever so amiable. Tho the film loses some of its sharpness in the final quarter (a brave ending would have made all the difference), Bring It On clearly touches on race and class issues whilst bringing to the fore the competitiveness of cheerleader teams. The usual formula's of bitching and back stabbing are naturally in here, and of course no film of this type would be complete without some strand of treacle plot love, but the mix is fine and the exuberance of the routines is hugely enjoyable cinema. Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, Gabrielle Union and Jesse Bradford fill out the cast and all offer something in the way of watch ability.
It could have been so much better for sure, but Bring It On is very entertaining film about a subject that until this picture came out (subsequent sequels would follow) was hardly tackled with this sort of vigour and intelligence before. 7/10
It's a sports movie about cheerleaders with Kirsten Dunst leading the charge. The other characters will not get that much spotlight as her but there will be other cool persons around too. The story will also get more serious as the movies goes on. 'Bring It On' is not actually a comedy, although it is a very funny piece anyway. It doesn't make you think about deep philosophic questions but does every movie have to? This is only about cheer leading and it's a good one about it.
People find confusing that the movie shows both self-absorbed cheerleaders who believe the endeavor to be worthwhile and meaningful, and at the same time cheerleading's detractors. Also confusing is how a cheerleading squad could function without a faculty coach. The reason this is peripheral to the film is that the film is about fair play and sportsmanship, and it succeeds in conveying that message.
The dialogue is funny and approaches wit several times. My favorite line in the movie is delivered by Courtney (Clare Kramer): "I don't mean to be predictable, but I don't give a sh!%!" Perfect!
The acting is pretty solid, what seems like overacting to some is simply part of the satire that the movie is. I would recommend this movie to anyone.
The plot: A 5 time national champion cheerleading squad has to redeem itself after it is discovered that their award winning routine has been stolen from a much more talented inner city cheerleading squad. It's supposed to be a comedy but the only thing that made me laugh was the fact that this film was made. The young characters are so absorbed in cheerleading that you wonder how they plan to make a living after they graduate from high school: they barely acknowledge the fact that they have classes to go to. None of them seem to have any genuine emotions and all of them are downright annoying. If these kids were in "Friday the 13th" people just might cheer for Jason.
As I was watching it I began to realize that each scene was getting worse and worse. Some examples. The laborious scene where the cheerleaders audition a new member for their squad: the captain insists on the weird girl while the other cheerleaders complain saying the process is supposed to be a democracy, their corrected and told it's a "cheerocracy". Then the captain is later referred to as a "cheertator". There is also the scene where a choreographer, who is recycled out of every dance movie ever made, trains the girls. Amongst other things he tells one girl to starve herself to get thin; that's just a wonderful idea to put into a teenage girl's head. Then there are the scenes with the inner city cheerleading squad that so tirelessly stereotype African American speech and manner that I was amazed that this film was released in the year 2000 and not 1950.
What's depressing is that as this movie played I actually heard young people laughing. This is humorous to them? Then I came to the conclusion that as long as they keep going to movies like this we'll keep getting movie like this. Perhaps one day there will actually be a film that shows what it's truly like to be a teenager and it might even star actors who aren't in their thirty's. Until then we're stuck with this AWFUL, TRITE, APALLING, HORRENDOUS, ODIOUS, REVOLTING, HIDEOUS, LOATHSOME, REPULSIVE, IMMATURE, NIGHTMARISH, HORRID PIECE OF TRASH!!!!!!!!
The thing I find most curious about this movie, however, was the lack for the most part of the East Compton Clovers (the black cheerleading squad) in the movie. While it would've been more interesting to focus on their side of the conflict, they are instead given a few scant appearances to advance the plot, as opposed to actually being part of the movie. When they are present, all but one exhibit the tired, demeaning "dumb ghetto girl" persona.
So, instead, the film centers on the unlikable white squad with the stolen routines and their likable leader with conscience, played by Kirsten Dunst. The leader, a senior, is worried about her team losing, since all she can do is cheerleading. Just when the problem is introduced, however, the movie has moved on, bypassing what could've been a more interesting plot line to center more on the dull goings-on as the team scrambles to learn some new cheerleading routines, as romance brews for Dunst.
With romance, conflict, and cheerleaders, this film is perfectly set up. But the lack of humor and interest cause the pyramid to quickly topple. But hey, at least there are the cheerleaders...