So last week I wrote about “Graduation Day,” and this week had the opportunity to watch yet another cheesy movie and I must say that Intentionally Cheesy Movie Night is a very satisfying way to start the week. I think I might make it a Sunday weekly tradition! ‘Cause Sunday evenings generally stress me out.
As always, I warn you that there will be spoilers.
Okay, “Stick It” is SO my new favorite movie. Well, you know, in that Perks of Being a Wallflower kind of way. It is my favorite movie today.
First of all, I will drag out the old list.
What I Looked For In A Movie
(Looked, because my tastes have expanded in leaps and bounds, but the list isn’t obsolete, just not a requirement anymore. I am learning how to be flexible!)
Five stars! There was actually one scene with two men in it that I thought should be cut, but that was really more of an editing issue to me than anger that men showed up. Meanwhile, the dudes Haley, the lead character was friends with, were great. And Jeff Bridges was awesome. If you thought Jeff Bridges wouldn’t be awesome, then we need to have a serious discussion. But wait for after my “Iron Man” blog.
Anyway, see, I love “boy” stuff now! Always have. But traditionally, though I enjoyed my soldiers and digging holes in the yard, I truly loved Barbie and stuff about girls coming together (hold your horses) and making good teams. The Baby-Sitters Club is a perfect example. They were all different, in both looks and personality, and though they had relationship issues, the point was about their friendship and taking care of kids. Tween-friendly AND deep! Not that we called ourselves tweens back then.
But yeah, that’s me. As Elliot from “Scrubs” said, an eternal 13-year-old girl at heart, when it comes to this stuff. And so “Stick It” totally rocked this one out. Haley is my new girlfriend/hero. She rocked in a way that I can’t explain. And the other girls, at first, you think it’s gonna be a Lifetime movie where you hate everyone except Haley and Jeff Bridges, which could grow wearisome.
In the end, however, everyone ends up being awesome in a different way. It’s difficult to describe, but there was some really nice, unexpected character development in that movie.
So, yes. My kind of chick flick. Girlie to the max, but lots of cool action. Perfect combo.
2. Interesting-looking people. (I’d rather watch a bunch of interesting looking people than a bunch of plastic robots; even if the plastic robots are pretty, there’s only so attractive plastic can become.)
NO problem whatsoever here. It was a very strange-looking cast. But if you know me at all, you know I prefer that.
Check! Haley took baths full of ice cubes and water, that’s how much she pushed herself AND was fierce. Also, that first half of the sentence makes it sound a lot dirtier than it was. No pun intended.
4.Confident yet non-misogynistic guys.
Absolutely! There were villainous guys, but the main point is that Jeff Bridges is awesome.
Yeah. Some of the time, it was annoying, but have I mentioned that Jeff Bridges is awesome?
Dude. Not only were their tears, there is a scene where Haley is on the balance beam, and this drop drips and bounces all artistically on the balance beam. You think it’s sweat, but then you see that is a tear! And either way are impressed when she does not slip on it and fall, which is totally what would happen in a lot of movies.
The best kind of despair, where it never really even gets to show its face too much, because Haley is busy making the world a better place and inspiring her teammates. I am not making this up.
No! No death. But I was pretty glad about that.
Dude. You don’t even understand. I will keep this short: I wished the montages were longer. When does that ever happen?
10. Horrible life events.
Only in a background, “Save the Last Dance” sort of way. But that stuff kind of dragged the story down, in my opinion. Not in the case of “Save the Last Dance,” because…you know what, now that we’re talking about “Save the Last Dance” (I love dancing movies only a little bit less than gymnastics movies), I realize that everyone in this world should see the following scene:
Okay, never mind. I went on Youtube to try to find that video where Seth on “The O.C.” is high and cries at “Save the Last Dance,” but all I got were puzzling links to Michael Buble. Then I widened the “O.C.” search, and I started to feel really queasy, there amongst the montage videos set to “The Reason” by Hoobastank. Montage should never be used for evil.
Not only did it have sarcasm, but it was like the movie kept switching around how they executed said sarcasm. It was like the time I was in fifth grade and in jazz class and rather than make up a routine, just pretended I was dancing with my girlfriends and freestyled to Madonna. Nothing planned, but it basically worked.
Believe it or not, yes. In fact, both Haley and Jeff Bridges said some very deep quotes. That I did not write down.
If I try to explain to you the wit of this movie, my brain might get too twisty. There were the randomest one-liners, particularly jarring because you don’t really watch “Stick It” for the scintillating dialogue. Well, I didn’t. But there was almost a…Shakespearian comedic setup to this movie. I sort of wish I was kidding, but I’m really not. The humor in this movie runs the gamut. I shouted out very “Saved By the Bell” audience-esque, “OHHHHHHH!!!”s more than a few times to some good burns that you’d expect in a movie called “Stick It.” But then there were times like when Josie said something mean and Haley totally CALLED her on it, reason number 742 why I totally love her. So I’m all excited, watching Haley defend this other woman, thinking, “What a deep and emotionally satisfying scene.”
But then out of NOWHERE, Josie steals the show by saying this:
“It’s not called ‘gymNICEtics.'”
14. A communal gathering place; e.g., Luke’s, Joe’s.
Almost better than a communal eat-/drinkery is a school and/or team. My love of gymnastics and cheerleading are very intertwined. I couldn’t pursue gymnastics due to my body’s, erm, *rebellion,* but I think cheerleading was a better fit for me in the long run.
All of which is to say that I of course fell in love with the gymnasium in “Stick It.” You have no idea the thrill it used to give me, back in elementary school when it was Gymnastics Season. The whole gym was filled with mats and equipment, and for me, it was the equivalent of a carnival appearing at the train station, or Christmas morning. Any movie that can remind me of that feeling is all right in my book.
15. Weird lighting that fits the mood.
Well. At one point, there was a truly fantastic dream sequence, and it was a little grainy. And the scenes where Haley is a dirt biker (I think, sorry if I’m wrong, I had a pink 10-speed) were kind of more “We’re the ‘intelligent’ new show on the (RIP) WB,” lighting-wise.
But mainly, there was really bright, trippy lighting that was super. The gymnasium was red and white, which of course made my over-associative brain reminded of Red Stripe. You can’t put Red Stripe into the equation and not feel better.
16. Groups of misfits forming unlikely bonds.
In the “Bleach” and “Heroes” meets “Swan’s Crossing” kind of way.
17. The geek getting the girl/guy.
Yes! There was that one shaggy dude who was totally the guy I would have gone for when I was like, 18. Usually, those guys get misunderstood by society and women. But in this case, he totally humanized the worst yet/therefore awesomest girl, Josie, when he fell for her and she out of nowhere became so sweet in her own weird way.
18. Personal growth.
Personal growth, like many other issues, is something that I really should avoid talking about if I’m not going to like, set aside an evening to drink tea while discussing it.
19. Preferably, a meaningful goodbye at some point.
I don’t think so
Anyway. I’m not happy to have only 19 criteria on the list, so here is my addition of:
20. Awesome music.
This movie was a tad uneven, music quality-wise, but got it right more than it got it wrong.
So. What is your “list?” If you needed to hand a list of qualities to someone who had to go pick the movie you had to marry, sickness and health-wise. The kind that you’d bank on never getting sick of. What would be your list? And what are some movies that fit those criteria for you, and why? My top three, list-fulmillment-wise: “Clueless,” “The Craft,” and the newer “Little Women.” The stuff I could watch when I have a stomachache or am upset pissed, whatever. Like the comfort food of movies. Discuss your cinematic Ben & Jerry®.
©June 1, 2008