Clueless Review

Preface

  • Clueless is a movie that I saw a few years back and ultimately I didn’t like too much for some reasons I’ll discuss in this review.
  • But then I re-watched it upon special request and have a different opinion which I’m more happy to talk about!

Premise

  • So Clueless is about teen life in L.A. in the 90s, and particularly about the shenanigans of one girl named Cher and her friends.
  • The movie doesn’t have one, set, particular storyline to it from beginning to end but these escapades ultimately tie together in a really neat way.

Cast and Characters

  • One of the problems I had with this movie the first time I saw it was the character of Cher, because I thought she was just too whiny and too bratty and it got on my nerves a little bit too much.
  • But upon this re-watch, I could see that she was purposefully made this way as a kind of critique on how teenagers over-exaggerate everything and how sometimes the world can seem like it’s ending when we don’t get our way, really reflecting the immaturity that we teenagers have.
  • I thought Alicia Silverstone was a good pick for this role too because, despite these factors she does have a likability in the role, and she isn’t ditzy enough to be forgettable.
  • There are a lot of other young actors and actresses in this movie too including her friend Dionne, who I thought was fine.
  • She wasn’t crucial to the plot of the movie, but you understand why she’s in there.
  • And there’s this girl Tai who is a main focus of the movie, because she causes some issues in trying to join their clique.
    • She was a cool character, but was supposed to walk a line of likable and unlikable whereas she felt unlikable for most of the times she was on screen, though maybe that’s just me!
  • My favorite character in the movie though was probably her ex-stepbrother Josh as played by Paul Rudd.
  • Paul Rudd just had the charisma and likability to pull off this role, and he had those two qualities more than anyone else in the movie.
  • Like I said, everything is purposely exaggerated but Paul Rudd is like our eyes into the movie, the normal person seeing all of this going on.
  • I liked Cher’s dad too, he was a funny character they pulled in for just a few scenes and worked super effectively.
  • Other than that, I liked the teachers, I didn’t like Dionne’s boyfriend who popped up a few times during the movie, that role felt a little too forced and– ya know, here’s what it felt like. It felt like the screenwriter knew a guy like this when he/she was a teenager and promised him he’d make it into the movie, then when the script was already done, they just scribbled him in there.
  • So yes, a few of the characters didn’t work or didn’t FULLY portray their roles completely but ultimately all of the characters did work off of each other EXTREMELY well.
  • You feel like there could have been some improv-ing on set because these characters were all so fun and all of the actors were just getting along so well, having such a fun time working with one another.
  • And overall, the cast in general did work as a fully functioning machine.
  • Oh, I didn’t buy any of these kids as being 15 or 16 though.
  • I’m 16, and I have seen NO girls my age that look like Alicia Silverstone in this movie.

Script/Setting

  • Now like I said, the script in this movie isn’t the most realistic thing in the world.
  • Something like Mean Girls was witty enough to pull off an absurd factor, but also real enough to be believable. Maybe it’s just that I don’t go to school in L.A. in the 90s but this didn’t have that realism to me.
  • I’m not saying every movie has to be timeless to be good, I’m just saying that for something like this: it helps!
  • The dialogue and jokes were really snappy which I liked. Though they didn’t have the wit of something like Mean Girls or the smarts of something like Ferris Bueller they were so snappy that they worked for what this movie was, and I give credit to the writer for that.
  • Whoever wrote this movie (sorry I don’t know your name) did a really great job capturing what L.A. life is like. I’ve only been to L.A. once and I could tell that. I can’t say whether or not it captured the 90s well, but it definitely created a fun L.A. city-wide atmosphere.
  • And they did character development really well, especially in Cher.
  • Something like this movie isn’t trying to win Best Picture, it’s just trying to be a snappy high school movie for teens but it develops its lead character really well, so much so that you can easily identify the changing points of the character throughout the movie.
  • Even other characters develop in their own small ways, I can think of a few off hand, but I’ll let you guys see some of them for yourselves.
  • And though there was no solid plot, like here’s point A let’s end at point Z, the movie really stylistically wove together a bunch of shorter sub-stories into this movie about Cher’s life.
  • Movies can do that very rarely, something like Boyhood last year I thought just failed at doing so and seemed too pretentious, but Clueless did it in a neat way that didn’t make you question, “huh, what was the plot of that…”

In Conclusion

  • In Conclusion guys, I don’t have a ton to say about Clueless in regards to the directing or the themes and morals.
  • I enjoyed the character of Cher, I liked some of the smaller characters but a few did feel somewhat useless at times.
  • The character development was good, the dialogue was nice and snappy, the plot flowed well, but it wasn’t always the most realistic or timeless movie you could sit back and watch every year and relate to more.
    • Though the movie is now 20 and there are relatable bits in there I s’ppose…
  • This movie kind of reminded me of The Duff 20 years ago (which is disappointingly still in my Top 5 favorite movies of the year so far, c’mon 2015!). It’s super entertaining and executed well, but is obviously not perfect, nor should it be.
  • At the end of the day, this movie accomplished what it wanted to accomplish: be a fun high school movie that teens will like.
  • And I will say to those teens, myself included, Clueless is definitely a good time and totally worth checking out.

***

So guys, those are my thoughts on Clueless! What are your thoughts on this movie, and who’s your favorite character in it? Let me know in the comments down below, and as always, thanks for reading guys.

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