** BM
Starring: Rose McGowan, Rebecca Gayheart, Julie Benz, Judy Greer


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"Jawbreaker" begins with a narrator telling us that Rose McGowan, Rebecca Gayheart and Julie Benz went to my high school. Now, not only does this narration only last until the opening credits and then vanish mysteriously, but no one in my high school EVER wore high-heels, leather pants and midriff shirts - and NO ONE ever showed their cleavage if they could help it. Maybe I went to high school at the wrong time in the wrong place - a suburb of Toledo, Ohio - but I would remember these chicks if I'd seen them. This flick is for L.A. teen hipsters.

The story is that the three uberbabes try to play a prank on the fourth, nice uberbabe and wind up accidentally killing her by shoving a jawbreaker down her throat. Then they cover it up, and those wacky teen politics come into play - the cool vs. the geek, the ugly vs. the pretty - as a geek named Fern (Judy Greer) stumbles upon their naughtiness and makes a deal to become cool in exchange for her silence. Thus, she's renamed Vylette and gets a swell makeover.

Forgive me for maturity, but these teen politics were never this clear-cut when I was growing up. I was a geek, so I thought they were at the time, but I soon found out that all the cool kids never really saw themselves that way, had no clue that they were stuck-up, yadda yadda yadda. Hold on, sorry. I went a little 'reality crazy' there. This is a 'stylized' movie - which means constant, blistering soundtrack, overly blatant and forced unnatural dialog and occasional out-of-place wipes between scenes.

McGowan, who I had previously approved of, is a nightmare of aggressively monotonous delivery and all-around abrasive unbelievability. She could be locked up for criminally negligent reckless thespianism. Gayheart isn't all that much better, but at least she doesn't have as much screen time to stare at us with that frighteningly blank yet disturbingly fascinating face and deliver all sorts of wretched lines while mooning over Captain Smarm, the king of the drama club. We're supposed to know that she's gotten over her 'self-absorbed popularity' because she falls for this half-assed wannabe rebel weasel. It's odd to think that when a guy's into acting in high school, he's the ultimate in integrity and benevolence, but when he succeeds in his chosen craft and gets famous, he's automatically a sell-out superficial celebrity suckapunk.

I did brighten up slightly when they started a montage of a bar scene with "Rock You Like A Hurricane" by The Scorpions playing. This was weird and ridiculous enough to actually spark some laughter - but it was ultimately ruined by the sight of the oldest kid from "Mr. Belvedere" - I mean, Marilyn Manson - gyrating suggestively and without all that stupid make-up he's taken to wearing. Good god, that thing isn't good.

"Jawbreaker" is an annoying film. The ad campaign trying to associate it with "Heathers" was just insulting.

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