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Do Revenge

Do Revenge

Do Revenge is Mean Girls meets Jawbreakers meets Heathers by way of Strangers on a Train. Needless to say, nary an original thought went into making this movie. Moreover, I think the filmmakers may be a bit confused as to what it takes to get into Yale, though they seem to know that a teenager who devotes all of her time to the Revenge Business is bound to lose her high school scholarship; at the same time, however, theyíre oblivious to the fact that a 28 year old high schooler is not what comes to mind when we think of an intelligent person.

Then again, the film is set in one of those high schools where the seniors are played by actors whom actual high schoolers would think of as senior citizens, and where no student is ever seen attending class or doing homework; as a matter of fact, Rosehill must be one of those teacher-less (there is a headmaster, although being of the female persuasion, I believe the correct term is headmistress ó and I mean gramatically correct, however politically incorrect that might be) schools where all activities are extracurricular. What do you mean, there are no such schools?

All of the above notwithstanding, I canít help feeling a measure of begrudging respect for a movie that references "Dante's eighth circle of hell" without feeling the need to actually explain the reference; the filmmakers either trust that the viewers are familiar with the Divine Comedy, or just donít care if they arenít. Unfortunately, Iím going to have to deduct the film a million brownie points for doing this:

Now Do Revenge is not just Mean Girls/Jawbreaker/Heathers; itís also every generic, derivative teen comedy/drama coming of age flick thatís been released in the last five years or so. This is bar none the worst possible combination of lazy writing, clunky exposition, and disregard for suspension of disbelief. If I wanted to see text messages, I would look at my cellphone screen, not my TV screen.

Anyway, I guess Do Revenge deserves, all things considered, a little credit for the way it handles its premise. The takeaway is not so much 'two wrongs donít make a right' as 'two wrongs cancel each other out,' which I suppose is an 'eye for an eye' sort of outlook in which the whole world doesnít necessary have to go blind. Do the protagonists learn a lesson here? Kinda. Do they learn that lesson in a classroom? Hell no, for reasons cited above, but thatís still better than nothing, right?

PS. The aforementioned headmistress is played by Sarah Michelle Gellar, but I havenít the slightest idea why. I mean, itís not quite a cameo, but itís not exactly stunt casting either. Letís put it like this: her brief appearance in Sheís All That made a whole lot more sense (she was, after all, dating Freddie Prinze Jr. at the time).