Monday, 14 July 2014

Sugar and Spice (2001)

When cheerleading captain Diane falls pregnant and is disowned by her parents, the rest of the squad vow to help give her baby a good start in life ... by putting their cheer skills to use to rob a bank.

Your reaction to that premise is probably a fairly good guide to whether you'll like this movie.  If you think it sounds like a goofy bit of fun, like I did, then you should check it out.  If you don't, I doubt there is anything in the movie itself that will change your mind.

Anyway, Diane is cheer captain, dating the cutest boy in school, and is BFFs with all the other members of the cheerleading squad.  "These are the best days of your life." she tells herself in the mirror. "For now."

Alas, the sunshine and roses come to an end when Diane tells her parents she's pregnant.  She and her boyfriend find themselves disowned, and while they manage to find an apartment and get part-time jobs, they'll never be able to stay afloat once she can't work any longer.

And that's where the bank robbery plan comes in.

This is not a movie that takes itself too seriously.  The characters are very exaggerated and over the top, and the film's events are far-fetched.  But in my opinion, that's a feature, not a bug.  This is not a premise that would work with nuanced characters and realistic plans.

I do like that the film is almost entirely driven by female characters.  There are men in the movie, but they're mostly plot devices or window dressing.  Which is a nice inversion of how the gender roles in too many films play out.

A fun bit of nonsense.

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