Crossroads (2002)
Main cast: Britney Spears (Lucy), Zoe Saldana (Kit), Anson Mount (Ben), and Taryn Manning (Mimi)
Director: Tamra Davis

This movie is... uh, how do I put it? Sad? Okay, sad. It is not sure whether it wants to be a girly-giggles show aimed at preteens or a genuine movie of teenagers' coming of age. It ends up a macabre bastard spawn of both of those kinds of movies. And it is also amusing how this movie shamelessly panders to stereotypes.

Lucy just wants to find and make up with her mother, have sex, and sing at every opportunity. She writes poetry that is ghostwritten by Dido Armstrong. Kit just wants to marry Mr Wrong, and is too clueless to see it. Mimi is the one pregnant, raped, and angry.

Mimi teaches everybody to punch people. She is angry. She is the only character remotely real here, and I hope Taryn Manning can survive this movie with her reputation intact. Kit is clueless, and Lucy is the worst as the poster girl created to pander to preteen girls. Lucy writes poetry ("I'm not a girl, not yet a woman...") and gets deflowered by Ben, cradle snatcher, all the while giggling and singing happy la-la we-love-Madonna songs. Ben, the threatening male figure, becomes castrated as one of the girls by the end, free with his hugs and "Yo, girlfriends!" Okay, maybe not the "Yo! Girlfriends!"

Mind you, I did try to give this movie a chance. Hey, it has potential. But the filmmakers are too in awe of Britney/Lucy, whose problems are the least interesting of the three bimbos, and too busy pandering to Britney Spears fans who want to see her reiterate how Pure and Virginal she is even as she flashes her knickers to every horndog in the audience. Like Spears, this movie is a bad tease, a teenage girl trying to play Lolita and getting it all wrong.

On the other hand, if this is Mimi's story... but it's not. So too bad, girls, bedtime's here, time to get lost and dream of growing up.

Rating: 40

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