Saturday, 4 June 2011

Film Review: Prom

Rating: 5.5/10- Average

The prom is the event of the high school calendar. There have been numerous screen versions featuring the ‘prom’ from comedy (American Pie, Never Been Kissed) to musicals (Grease) to horror (Carrie, Prom Night) to drama (My Sister’s Keeper, Twilight). From the title Prom I was expecting an amalgamation of all of these in one package. Then I remembered that this is a Disney film.

Director: Joe Nussbaum. Screenplay: Katie Wech. Producers: Ted Griffin and Justin Springer. Cinematographer: Byron Shah. Editor: Jeffrey M. Werner. Score: Michael Krikorian and Steve Morantz. Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures. Starring: Aimee Teegarden, Yin Chang, Nicholas Braun, Dean Norris, Danielle Campbell and Nolan Sotillo. Age Restriction: PG. Running Time: 104 Minutes.

Nova (Aimee Teegarden) is a good girl. She heads up the Prom committee and spends all of her time working very, very hard to make sure that everything goes 'right'. As luck would have it, three weeks before the Prom all of her hard work goes up in smoke and she is forced to work with the 'bad boy' Jessie (Thomas McDonell). We know he is a 'bad boy' because he has long hair, rides a motorcycle and is in trouble with the principal for cutting class. Oh yes and he sometimes gets into fights. Please note he does not have a drug habit, play in a death metal rock band, drink whisky from a hip flask or carve out his initials on little eighth graders' lockers with a hunting knife. Any or all of these would have made him an actual bad boy as opposed to a Disney bad boy.

Naturally lots of wooden dialogue gets lobbed between them and they manage to find a way to work together.

But wait there's more. Three other sub-plots. One about a rather gauche boy who can't find a date for prom, one about a young chap who realises that his perfect girl might have another mate in mind, and one about a slightly less conventional chap whom someone else thinks is telling porkies about his date. Oh wait, there was another as well. The 'perfect' couple face a challenge when she's accepted to design school in New York, and he thinks they'll be together forever.

Too many characters, not enough quirk, two good lines, lots of pauses.....between dialogue and a 'let's-choose-my-prom-dress' montage which left me wondering since when does a 'bad boy' get himself 'whipped'?

Verdict: For the tween market, the girls in the audience were loving this one. For anyone else, perhaps not.

Prom is out in cinemas now.

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