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Mean Girls (2004)

Mean Girls movie poster.jpg

Rosalind Wiseman’s 2002 book Queen Bees & Wannabes is a serious-minded guide for parents about how to help their teenage daughters through the maze of high school, cliques and arbitrary social rules. Saturday Night Live’s Tina Fey (wonder what happened to her?!) took it and turned it into a smart comedy screenplay, directed by Mark Waters. Cady Heron (Lindsay Lohan) has been home-schooled in Africa (yes, it’s that specific…) and when her parents move back Stateside is sent to high school in suburban Illinois where she is ridiculed by the Plastics, a self-appointed girl clique who rule the school. Befriended by two social exiles, she infiltrates the group but makes the mistake of falling for the ex of Queen Bee Regina (Rachel McAdams). Maths teacher Fey tries to keep everyone civilised but when Regina figures out what’s happening and her Burn Book goes public the school goes full tilt jungle madness. Fey probably took inspiration from the lists of recommended films at the back of Wiseman’s book – which also has a list called It’s Not Just Her Generation:  maybe when you visit someone who’s not dead and they have a lot of flowers in their house you’ll now know why (they’re the person everyone’s most scared of… That explains a LOT.)  This is genuinely good fun – for everyone. And you know what? Regina’s right – ‘fetch’ is not a cool word. What a shame that out of all the terrific performers here it should be the wonderfully gifted Lohan whose career is in the doldrums.

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About elainelennon

An occasional movie-watching diary.

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