A few months ago, I reviewed one of teenage Alix’s favorites, Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison. In my review, I made the completely unfounded claim that the film adaptation was super shitty, having never actually seen it. I think I based this on some bad reviews I read when it came out? And I LOVE this book and I LOVE Gurinder Chada, so I just spared myself the heartbreak and never saw it. Until you, dear readers, told me to go watch the movie. And I did! And here we are! Let’s discuss, with the power of SCIENCE.
The So-Called Plot: Being a teenager is rough, a fact that no one knows better than Georgia Nicolson. Her family is embarrassing, her huge nose is embarrassing, her accidently-shaved-off-eyebrow is embarrassing, and she went to a costume party dressed as a stuffed olive. Most of all, she will never get a boyfriend. Pretty much the only thing going for her is her awesome group of friends, the Ace Gang.
But things start to look up when the incredibly hot twin brothers, Tom and Robbie, move to her school from London. Georgia and bestie Jas attempt to woo them with elaborate scheming, but things quickly backfire in spectacular fashion. Meanwhile, her parents’ marriage seems to be crumbling, and she may be forced to move to New Zealand. Can Georgia manage turn things around, and fix the mess she’s created?
Georgia Groome wasn’t in much of anything prior to this movie, and she hasn’t been in anything noteworthy since. I can only assume that this is because she is not actually an actress, but rather stumbled onto set one morning and went about her daily life, unaware that she was being filmed. Her casting is PERFECT. She looks like Georgia, acts like Georgia, delivers snark like Georgia, but also maintains a surprisingly human and vulnerable side, like Georgia. Mad props to whatever casting director found her.
Much as it pains me to admit it, Kickass star, creepy facial hair afficionado, and child groom Aaron Johnson is absurdly attractive in this movie. As bass-playing, organic-vegetable-schilling Robbie, he is basically a really hot, very humanoid cartoon. In no way is he playing an actual human that would actually exist. But that won’t stop me from drooling over Robbie in a way that is not strictly age-appropriate. In fact, the LEAST plausible part of this movie is the part where Jas dibses his brother Tom over Robbie. While Tom is a good-looking guy, no one would ever even notice him standing next to Aaron Johnson.
Oh my god, Jas is so stupid I can’t even... I guess Eleanor did a good job? Mostly I just wanted to murder her during the entire movie, which is for the best. In the book, I always felt like Georgia was inexcusably horrible to Jas, and me wanting to kill her constantly makes Georgia a more sympathetic character.
Alan Davies was NOT how I pictured Mr. Nicolson. But that’s fine, because I LOVE Alan Davies! He should play everyone’s dad!
Chemistry Grade: B
In print, I always found Robbie’s attraction to Georgia to be somewhat implausible. I love her, but she’s generally a whiny, crazy person with a selfish streak. Your basic eccentric teenager, essentially. I felt like their relationship was at least a little more believable in the film version; Robbie and Georgia have surprisingly good chemistry, and Georgia manages to form complete sentences around him, even if they are mostly nonsense.
Cliche Count: 14
*Embarrassing primping mishap x2
*Hot, sensitive, musician MLD
*Bitchy blonde antagonist
*Improbable teen parties x2
*Lesbian Gym Teacher
*Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus cameo
*Teenage girls, slutty halloween costumes
*Parental marriage trouble
*Rainy breakup scene
*Secondary characters spontaneously and improbably paired off at the end
*Awkwardly public makeout session in front of everyone, including parents, in which nobody bats an eye
There’s not a ton of quoteable lines, although there are a couple of good moments. Mostly things Georgia says while being horrible to her parents.
On her father’s general unhipness:
This isn’t the middle ages! Or the seventies, as you call it.
On moving to New Zealand:
I’d be bored to death by sheep and hobbits.
Soundtrack: This soundtrack is filled with actually good music. With almost all the songs, if they aren’t already in my itunes, I’m about to look them up. Plus, Robbie’s band, the Stiff Dylans, formed an actual band because of the movie!
Slumber Party Potential: Low
This movie was fun, but I might be a little old to be bringing it out at a slumber party. If I’d seen it and loved it when I was a teenager, then definitely, but I generally prefer the likes of classics like Clueless and Sixteen Candles for nostalgia factor. With the right set of friends, though, I’d still queue this one up for a night of popcorn and Ben & Jerry’s on the couch.