Director: Will Gluck
Starring: Emma Stone, Penn Badgely, Amanda Bynes
The Fired Up! director Will Gluck returns to the classroom with an intelligent comedy which was a sleeper hit on its release in the US. Dissatisfied with her reputation as a "goodie-two-shoes" at her high school, Olive (Emma Stone) tells a lie to her best friend about a relationship, that is overheard by a moralistic student (Amanda Bynes) who spreads the news. Far from mortified, Olive enjoys her newfound reputation. Soon, however, the lies get out of hand and Olive discovers popularity and happiness do not go hand in hand, especially as it pushes her away from her old crush Todd (Penn Badgely). This is the film where Stone really established herself not only as a star but as an engaging and charismatic actress, before her profile was boosted by her casting in Marc Webb's reboot of Spider-man. Bolstered by a strong supporting cast of older comedy actors (Thomas Hayden Church and Lisa Kudrow appear as teachers), she takes what could have been tricky subject matter and instead creates a mature dialogue about American teenage relationships. This, of course, is combined with a very smart script from the first-time screenwriter Bert V Royal, which never once reverts to American Pie-style crudity and even brings a touch of class with references to the classic novel The Scarlet Letter throughout. A thoroughly entertaining comedy with a lead who is destined for big things.
For show times, see: www.grandcinemas.com, www.cineroyal.ae, www.reelcinemas.ae, www.cinestarcinemas.com