Not a Movie Snob - Easy A

Posted on Monday, September 20, 2010 at 07:00 PM

"There's nothing easy about getting through this clunker!"

Easy A

I am dumbfounded and in awe of the majority opinion on this little exercise in endurance.

Right now on Rotten Tomatoes, Easy A has a firm mid 80's approval rating. Roger Ebert (a more and more unreliable critic these days I hate to say) gave it three and a half stars out of four. The praise is almost unanimous: 'Easy A is a winner!' Did I see the same movie as everyone else? Did my specific theatre get a work in progress cut? Or have our standards sunk that low that a movie like Easy A is considered a good, nay, great time at the movies?

Normally I try to avoid these teen type movies if I can, and this is why. They suck.

Easy A wants so bad to be Juno, it's really kind of surprising it doesn't succeed at its imitation more. It's obvious the writer of the film watched Juno a hundred times, took that inspiration and crated something with results akin to The Byrds trying really hard to be The Beatles and failing.

Browsing some of the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, it seems the consensus is more that people liked Emma Stone more than the movie itself. This is my first problem with this movie. I found Emma Stone to be kind of annoying. Her 'witty' character isn't all that witty. That has more to do with the writer than her though. Note to writer: When you make all the other characters of the same age around your main character complete morons, it doesn't make your main character witty and intelligent. Many of Stone's lines felt as forced as they were, making it very hard to buy what she was trying to sell. I liked her much better in Superbad and Zombieland. Maybe she's not ready to step into the spotlight just yet.

Speaking of not buying what was on the screen, was I the only one who found the high school in the movie to be the most unrealistic high school of all time?! I mean come on, I went to public school my whole life, my family moved around a lot, and I went to four different high school's. Let me tell you, no one gives a crap about someone losing their virginity in public high school's. Lots of people are having sex, it's not a big deal. Also, someone being threatened with expulsion for saying a bad word? Did I miss the title card that says that this movie takes place in the 1950's?

Of course no bad movie about high school would be complete without the group of overzealous bible thumping Christians, on a mission to expel the school of evil while sitting in a circle over animatedly singing hymns and sending prayers into the sky. That was something else I guess I missed during my secondary years.

Then you have the best friend who also happens to be gay (didn't see that one coming), a love interest who shows up at exactly the right times to help the main character through a struggle and even an instance of adultery at one point (seriously, the originality of this script never ceases to amaze).

Thankfully, there is one character (and actor) who is likeable and well done. Thomas Haden Church is Emma Stone's teacher. One of those teacher's who's cool and easy going, while still challenging his students and questioning them when they act like idiots (he does a lot of questioning in this movie). The character is bittersweet though, as Haden Church is way, way better than playing a bit in a movie like this. Another recognizable name is Lisa Kudrow, as a guidance councillor, who is basically just a more annoying, more aggressive Phoebe from Friends. Have your choices become that sparse Lisa, that you need to take small Phoebe roles in dumb comedies?

As to the reason for the movie, you know, the point? There isn't one. Emma Stone's character never really explains why she lets the rumours about her go as far and as long as they do. Unless you consider her saying that she just 'felt like it' an explanation.

So when you're trying to decide what to see at the theatre on date night, consider this: The Town, 130minutes. I sat down and after what felt like ten or fifteen minutes passed, it was over. Easy A, 92minutes. I sat down and after what felt like four hours passed, it was over.

I guess one good thing that I did get out of the movie was this: Just because a movie has a high rating on Rotten Tomatoes, doesn't mean it's good.

Rating: ½ *



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