Friday, February 05, 2010
Teen drama and quirk lovers, this one's for you.
Bliss (Ellen Page) lives in dead-end Texas working at the local, home-of-the-Squealer BBQ joint. Her mother (Marcia Gay Harden) knows her daughters tickets out of town include beauty and brains and she promotes this via beauty pageants. Bliss hates this endless parade while her younger sister grabs hold of it. (Begin teen drama.) One day Bliss discovers the big, wild world of Roller Derby and embraces the idea that she can be her own hero. So, she grasps her new dream. (Intensification of teen drama.) Bliss becomes Babe Ruthless, finds her special niche, adds new life to the "We're Number 2!" Hurl Scouts -- slackers of the Roller Derby world, and meets her nemesis on wheels. Bliss embraces the one thing that makes her feel alive, meets the guy of her dreams and then discovers that the big beauty pageant is on the same day as the final Roller Derby face off. (Explosion of teen drama begins here.)
The drama is predictable but the characters are fun and the sports anti-hero concept is fresh. The Roller Derby action keeps the film speeding over film obstacles. My favorite parts of the film all included coach Razor (Andrew Wilson) and his hilarious, dry delivery. Pure entertainment with some laughs and a few feel good, awww moments.
Notes for parents. Teen drinking is an issue, however, there are consequences. One sexual conversation is especially verbally graphic in a scene where Bliss helps gross out her friend so she vomits.