Monday, 22 July 2013

Mean Girls

Let’s set the record straight right now: Mean Girls is a f*cking sick movie. Those who have any bad words against the story, the characters, the dialogue or the Plastics can stop reading right now and go read Immortal Technique tweets.  The art of emphasis has never been more so accurately placed, accurately executed. Mean Girls has a timeless ability so powerful that it takes you back to your high school days with minimal effort. Tina Fey has written a script that has – anything but carefully – depicted the most sensitive, obsessive and paranoid years of all our lives. Fey has not only identified [pretty much] every stereotype at high school, but she’s pumped up so much specific detail in them that you can’t help but relate to them.

Taken from some Tumblr page
High school madness comes in from the very beginning as we see it from the perspective of ‘the new kid’, Cady Heron. A character who starts off as evidently normal but ends up being just as crazy and involved in high school politics as everyone else. Just by falling for a guy, she becomes immediately typical and this is a representation of what Fey thinks is an inevitable outcome when joining a public high school. What’s crazy is, some of the dialogue from Mean Girls is scarily identifiable. Let’s look at a few current examples: how many people do you get that ask questions like “Do Muslims wear turbans?” “Do Hindus and Sikhs fast during Ramadan?” “Are you not allowed to eat anything when you fast?” If you live in the UK, then how many Asians and Blacks do you know that have asked a question such as “who the f*ck is Margaret Thatcher?” I’m writing all this from a British perspective so I can only imagine how absolutely literal the comparisons would be with schools in the USA. High school truly is an animal world, and by the end of the movie that comparison seems very valid and evident.
We’re in 2013 now, so writing what I’m about to write may seem a little bit very crazy: Lindsay Lohan was incredible as Cady. She looked perfect as the new kid, and a member of the Plastics. Her narration provided some reality in an otherwise unreal setting and her voice is ideal as well. The heart and soul of this movie, by a huge margin, are the characters of Regina, Gretchen and Karen: aka, the Plastics. Regina, amazingly portrayed by Rachel McAdams, is the definition of Queen Bee and is a character who you can guarantee exists in every high school around. The shining stars of the Plastics however, are Gretchen and Karen. These two are just so cleverly written to be absolutely stupid; their expressions are immaculate and timed to perfection. Note Karen’s face in the build-up to when she asks “So if you’re from Africa, why are you white?” which is challenged by Gretchen who states “You can’t just ask people why they’re white”. Both of these Plastics compete for who is the dumbest and hats off to Lacey Chabert and Amanda Seyfried for their awesome portrayals. Whilst Lizzy Caplan looked ideal for Janis, I think that her actual performance was missing some over the top qualities. Daniel Franseze is hilarious as the overly gay Damien. Tina Fey wasn't too bad herself.

Mean Girls is the most enjoyable example of feminist art. Where female self-awareness, politics and hormones are made to look like utterly stupid. What I really like is that this movie doesn't claim to be anything but a form of comic relief. Tina Fey’s sarcastic consistency has led this movie to become a cult classic and you know what: I think I want to watch it again.


My theatrical version of Stan

My theatrical version of Stan