Monday Movie Review - Easy A

I normally stick to reviewing things I can imbibe, but I saw Easy A last week and I have to recommend it. In a lot of ways it reminds me of a more light-hearted Juno, which is about the highest compliment I can think of for a high school comedy.

Emma Stone is great as a sassy, witty, nice girl who gets the attention of her whole school by pretending to hook up with a bunch of people. She is Juno-like in her ability to take the scorn of her entire school while maintaining a light-hearted, smartass mood. Also Juno-like are her parents, who continue the recent movie tradition of the super-understanding parents who are there for their kid no matter kind of shenanigans the kid is up to, because they know that their kid has a good heart and will get through everything okay. It's an interesting take on the rebellious teenager dynamic, because I feel like most rebellious teenagers rebel against (what feel like) oppressive parents. If your parents are cool (by parent standards), what are these rebellious teens rebelling against? In the case of Emma Stone's character, I guess she is rebelling against the oppressive social structure of high school?

The other great thing about the movie, other than its wit, is that it's openly referential about its source material. In a very meta way. The English class is reading The Scarlet Letter, so Emma Stone's character emphasizes her fake promiscuity by cutting out big red A's and stitching them to slutty outfits. She says at one point, "alas, my life is not a John Hughes movie" (paraphrase), and by the end of the film her true beau is standing on his neighbor's lawnmower holding up iPod speakers below her window a la Sixteen Candles while playing the signature song from The Breakfast Club. Nice.

Easy A was surprisingly fun, Emma Stone was great, and I enjoyed the smart updates to classic teen movie tropes that it brought to the table. It's not nearly as emotionally heavy as Juno, and not as unique in its vision, but I would definitely recommend it.


  1. Another fun fact about the movie is that it takes place in the town of Ojai, which is a quaint, pretty, and fairly rural town in the hills north of LA and Ventura. I've been there and it's fun to see the kids randomly in the middle of orange groves or whatever, which is basically what they have there.

  2. 1) I kind of like the idea of Monday Movie Review. I could definitely get into this.

    2) Your description of the final scene sounds a lot like John Cusack in Say Anything, but I admit I have not seen Sixteen Candles. I only know John Hughes and Molly Ringwald and Duckie from other movies, like Not Another Teen Movie, starring Lexi Grey.

    3) So if I haven't seen Easy A, and I was not planning on watching it, do you suggest that I add it to my queue? Or is this something that you would like to discuss if I had already seen it, but don't feel that it is worth me specifically seeking it out?

  3. "Not Another Teen Movie" starring Lexi Grey. I saw what you did there...

  4. Did you like that Scott? It's hidden in plain sight.

  5. Yeah great point, it was the end of Say Anything and not Sixteen Candles. I got my references confused.

    You have never seen the pinnacle (in my opinion) of the John Hughes-Molly Ringwald teen movies, The Breakfast Club? Really? Although I do have to say I really enjoyed Not Another Teen Movie.

    Yeah I would recommend adding it to the queue, and watching it with your wife/girlfriend in a casual setting when you just want a fun and light movie. Don't rush out to rent it or anything, just watch it when it shows up in the mail.

  6. Aaron - I'm in Royce's boat here: how can you not have seen Breakfast Club?!?

  7. I have seen the Breakfast Club. I was trying to make a list of facts about Sixteen Candles to show that I kind of understood the plot and the references without ever having seen the movie. My bad.

    My queue is somewhere around I might get to it by June 2013.