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Easy A

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Quite by accident, I received free passes to go see Easy A last week. Someone at NUVO mentioned the movie and a quick “I want to see that!” slipped out of my mouth. I was a little embarrassed because the movie’s demographic is teenagers; given that I’ll soon be 37, I felt like I was admitting I still wanted someone to buy me a pony. It didn’t matter, though — the movie looked cute and I wanted to see it, even if I could have given birth to some of the people who were sure to be in the audience.

The movie screened at AMC Castleton Square 14 (6020 E. 82nd Street) and proved in the first few minutes that it was going to be funny throughout instead of the kind of flick whose magic is solely in the previews. The protagonist, Olive, played by Emma Stone from such movies as The House Bunny and Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, dispelled teen angst over identity crises while the credits were still rolling and got the audience laughing. I breathed a sigh of relief; even if it was free, I was still glad it wasn’t going to suck.

The premise is that Olive helps out her friend, Brandon (Dan Byrd from "Cougar Town"), who is being bullied for being gay. The two hit a popular classmate’s party and pretend to have sex in the host’s bedroom. Olive is floating high on the newfound popularity that a rumor has brought her and doesn’t mind fake-rocking Brandon’s world. Brandon emerges a seemingly-straight stud and Olive quickly develops a reputation as the go-to girl for a good time. Unfortunately, as you might suspect, things backfire pretty quickly — the movie covers a two-week period in Olive’s life — but it’s all handled with witty retorts and a thankful lack of Lifetime movie moments. What I liked: The demonization wrought by the very Christian and very funny Marianne, played by Amanda Bynes (Hairspray, "What I Like About You"); Olive’s parents (Patricia Clarkson and Stanley Tucci as Rosemary and Dill, respectively) who seemed mostly realistic as hip parents; references to ‘80s movies; the phrase "mostly guys;" and the fact that the movie had several messages that were delivered without beating the audience over the head or, again, Lifetiming things. When the movie ended, I thought, “I would have happily paid $10 to see that,” which is always a good sign. I leave you with the trailer for the movie because Emma Stone’s delivery of her lines is just priceless. I unofficially give it four stars. If you disagree with me, you have to answer to Tom Cruise.

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