Part of LSM’s day off last Friday involved seeing an afternoon matinée showing of Easy A, the latest installment in teen romantic comedies. Unlike many of the recent offerings in that genre, this one reminded me of the John Hughes films of my own teen years. There’s even a handy montage of Hughes films as Olive, the misunderstood heroine, wishes her life could be more like some of the famous scenes we all know and love. Think Jake waiting outside the church in Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller leading an impromptu musical number in a Chicago parade, and Lloyd Dobler standing outside Diane Court’s window holding his jam box.
I think that few minutes of the movie successfully hit on each and every scene I ever imagined myself stepping into between oh, let’s say, 1982 and 1988. I loved this movie. It brought back memories of what it’s like to try to fit in so much that you lose a little bit of who you really are in the process. No matter how old we get and how comfortable we become in our own identities, doesn’t a little bit of that teenage geek reside deep down in the dark crevasses of our souls?
I didn’t see this film with my own teenagers. The responsible adult in me frowns on allowing children to skip school in order to attend movies containing vaguely inappropriate content with their mother in the middle of the day. Instead, I showed up at the theater alone, purchased my kids’ movie meal complete with mini popcorn, Skittles, and a very tiny Diet Coke, and settled myself front and center in the empty theater.
All was right in my movie-going world until two additional movie-goers entered and sat–you guessed it–right beside me. We were the only three people in the entire theater, yet they chose to invade my personal space. Seeing that they were around my age, I can’t tell you how tempted I was at various times during the film to lean over and ask what they thought about a particular line or scene. I did resist, though–evidently fear of social rejection doesn’t end with the teenage years.
My girls eventually made it to see Easy A. They enjoyed it as much as I did, and it opened up lots of great discussion about how hard it is to stop a rumour or repair a reputation once things spiral out of control. We talked about high school and the social ins and outs that seem So. Damn. Important. at the time but fade away so quickly once graduation comes and goes.
Go see Easy A. It’s a great escape that will make you feel young again–with the added bonus of knowing you’ll never have to relive those often angst-filled years.
- Movie Review: Easy A (blogcritics.org)