Sunday, April 22, 2007

Unfinished: Jawbreaker

Directed by Darren Stein
Released February 19, 1999

I hesitate to write this review, since I make it a policy not to review films that I have not watch in their full forms. "Jawbreaker" ranks among the few films I have ever turned off in my life, due either to extreme fatigue and disinterest ("Domino", "The Limey") or unbearable content ("Batman & Robin," "Red Planet," "The Dukes of Hazzard"). This film falls under the latter category.

The story begins with a prank kidnapping of a popular high school girl on her birthday by her three best friends. To make sure she does not scream, they shove a jawbreaker candy in her mouth and throw her in the trunk of their car. When they pop open the trunk to surprise her, they are horrified to discover that she has choked to death on the jawbreaker. As they scramble to cover it up, they are discovered by the unpopular Fern Mayo. To keep Fern quiet, heartless Courtney Shane makes her into one of the most popular girls in school.

I cannot say much more than that, because I turned it off midway through. The movie is so empty on plot and everything happens much too easily. While that may be the effect hoped for, the film comes off as a sloppily assembled and wholly obnoxious drawl. Everything is treated too lightly, and the manipulation and framing Courtney orchestrates is far too easy.

Watching this film, I truly realized how much I despise Rose McGowan, who is terrible as evil villain Courtney. She was less than good in "Grindhouse," but in this film, she is just dreadful. Her cohorts are not much better. Two actresses who would later to go on to be great star as Marcie, the dumbest of Courtney's lackeys, and Fern. Julie Benz, who is unbelievably bad as Marcie, starred in an amazing role this past season on "Dexter." Judy Greer, whose character is written terribly to begin with, has gone on to be pretty much the best thing about nearly everything she has starred in ("Arrested Development," "13 Going on 30," the list goes on).

This film is unspeakably awful, and words cannot describe the level to which it is annoying. I could not bear to finish it, and as such will refrain from giving it a grade. All I recommend is that you stay away.

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