The film is a teenage revenge drama set against the backdrop of high school shame and exclusion.
take revenge borrow a core idea from Alfred Hitchcockof stranger on the train, and reimagining the plot in a loosely intersecting teenager environment ignorance When john tucker must dieA black comedy that doesn’t really miss an opportunity to take a jibe with a rather bizarre title includes brash New Age characters and hitches, even though its narrative nods to issues like inclusivity, gender bias, and more. There’s a jargon that fuels the vibe of Cook’s noir and teenage angst.
High school life can be terrifying with intrigue, humiliation, and ostracism, and writer-director Jennifer Catin Robinson manages to capture the essence of it through her teenage revenge drama. has explored — especially in films such as Heathers, Cruel Intentions and Mean Girls. Her focus is on setting up tense stories with engaging twists. It succeeds in creating an all-around entertainer that justifies itself.
Robinson and co-writer Celeste Ballard write a twin revenge plan centered around the film’s protagonist, Drea (Camila Mendes) and Eleanor (Maya Hawk). Drea, the popular girl on campus, suddenly becomes a school outcast because of her boyfriend Max (Austin Abrams) leaks her sex tape. There is no evidence that Max did it, so he goes Scott-free. To make matters worse, Drea ends up incurring the ire of the principal (with a fun cameo by former Teenager star Sarah Michelle Gellar) for slapping Max in public out of disgust and anger. Eleanor, on the other hand, has just transferred and is usually an awkward misfit. She is shocked to learn that her former tormentor, Carissa (Ava Capri), is in the same school. Carissa kicked Eleanor out after the two girls spent time together at her summer camp when she was 13, spreading malicious rumors suggesting Eleanor was a sexual predator. was Driven by an urge for revenge, the two girls form a bond despite their different personas. decided to “take revenge” on At Cue, Eleanor infiltrates Max’s circle of playboys in an attempt to expose him. Meanwhile, Drea joins Carissa’s school garden community.
Much of the film’s appeal lies in the characterization of Drea and Eleanor and the buddy bonding chemistry the script portrays for them. Eleanor, a lone wolf, has a pet garden lizard named Oscar-winner Olivia Coleman. Eleanor is scathing with witty explanations when Drea is interested in choosing a pet. The daughter of Hollywood stars Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman, Maya Hawke has had no trouble bringing the character to life. She gives Drea a sexy edge, making her look as gullible as she is charming. Seeing how the equation between Drea and Eleanor develops and goes beyond their agenda of revenge makes me feel like it might have been a fitting name for this movie.
However, the storyline is more than just a few openable revenge tales. Writers Robinson and Ballard add a sinister twist to nicely complicate things in the final part of the drama, opening up possibilities for deeper context. As the story progresses, we realize there’s not a completely nice guy here, even if the revenge plot starts to get more twisted than it first seemed. As they suggest possible pathos and attempt to provide logic to their actions, things threaten to spiral out of control before Robinson gets the story back on track for a predictable ending.
The success of Robinson and Ballard’s work lies in the humor that balances the vintage Hollywood style of narrating teenage movies with the very contemporary campus culture that they create through their characters. Having worked on the screenplay for Thor: Love And Thunder, Robinson is no stranger to crafting funny lines that convey more than humor. “I’m Frankenstein and you’re Frankenstein’s Bad Her Bitch,” former alpha-her-girl Drea says while grooming Eleanor for her all-important first meeting with Max, an introvert. Talk to Eleanor. Campus favourite, Max, has won nearly every girl he knows twice, even though he’s found a cis-his hetero-male championing a student league that discriminates against women at school. Bravely enough hypocritical. The film continues to have such ironic humor in it, with regular allotments of twists underpinning the suspense.
Robinson’s use of music is interesting. The film’s soundtrack gives space to classic artists such as Hall, Fatboy Slim, Meredith Brooks, Olivia Rodrigo, and Billie Eilish. Music also formed the thematic core of Robinson’s early film, Someone Great, and in Do Revenge, the filmmakers make extensive use of music to define the different moods of the story. ’90s use gels with teenage nostalgia as youths in flashy designer outfits party hard and stroll the campus of posh Miami High School.
However, Robinson’s storytelling has a familiar wart. Almost in sync with her longstanding Hollywood cliché, Drea is gearing up to go to Yale (although she seems a long way from it). Her current and now unrelated relationship she has developed with her classmate Russ (Rish Shah) is too sketchy. For the heroine to be the gorgeous Camila Mendes, she needed a romantic track with a handsome hunk, as if Russ’ character was pushed into the script.
Perhaps writers Robinson and Ballard could have managed with less screen time. otherwise pleasant fare, take revenge Indeed, it looks like we saved at least 20 minutes from the 118 minute run time.
Vinayak Chakraavorty is a critic, columnist and film journalist based in Delhi NCR.
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