Easy A: Is This an ’80s Teen Comedy for a New Generation?

by Angel Cohn September 20, 2010 12:18 pm
<I>Easy A</I>: Is This an ’80s Teen Comedy for a New Generation?

Sure, Easy A plays fast and loose with the concept of The Scarlet Letter, casting its own lying tween as a modern day Hester Prynne caught in a scandal based on text messages and vlogs, but the other thing this film pays a large homage to is '80s teen comedies, particularly those from the John Hughes canon. In fact, so much love is paid to the movies of that decade that Olive (played by Emma Stone) even wistfully wishes that her life were like Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Say Anything or Can't Buy Me Love. Who can blame a girl who has likely been introduced to Patrick Dempsey as a brain surgeon for crushing on the younger version of him on a riding lawnmower? Or for wanting a Lloyd Dobler instead of the gross boys at her school who willing ply her with Red Lobster gift cards in exchange for faux sexual favors? And really, who doesn't want to party on a parade float with Ferris? But referencing those movies and actually having Easy A be considered a worthy successor to them (like Clueless or Mean Girls, rare films that can hit a believable romantic note about high school without going the raunchier American Pie route) are two completely different things. And while Easy A follows the formula of those retro gems, as I've broken it down below, it doesn't quite reach the high bar it set.

TAGS: easy a

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