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Customer Review

on June 22, 2002
I passed by "Girl" at the video store on more than once occasion because the box didn't look all that interesting. Finally I decided to give it a shot, and I found that it's one of the true gems out there. It's definitely a keeper.
Andrea Marr (Dominique Swain) is 18 and about to graduate from high school. Her best friend Cybil is an aspiring rock star who performs with a couple of mutual friends (Chris Masterton from Malcolm in the Middle and David Moscow from Newsies) and is well on her way to being discovered.
Andrea is only mildly interested in her friend's stardom, because she is totally obsessed with local hot guy rock star, Todd Sparrow (Sean Patrick Flannery). She goes to all of his concerts and eventually they do hook up.
Because Andrea is so into Todd, she doesn't realize that when Cybil sings a love song she's singing it about Andrea. Cybil is in love with Andrea but this fact is slowly revealed through the film and oblivious Andrea has to be hit in the head with a brick to even notice. Even her other friend's (Selma Blair, painfully anorexic looking and well cast) bulimia is pushed aside for the great Todd Sparrow.
Andrea navigates the whole underground rock scene, exuding pure joy because this guy Todd notices her...and sleeps with her. After they have sex in a horse stall in a dirty barn after a concert, Andrea's voice over tells us she "feels like a princess." This film has got a great handle on the neediness of young girls and how much value they put on a guy's opinion. It explores how a girl can easily let a guy overshadow her, and how she puts him on a pedestal whether he deserves to be there or not. Like it or not, girls act like this. The film is honest and raw in its portrayal.
Andrea does wake up from her fantasy of being "Todd's girl." She finds her own identity and recognizes the fact that her worth is not measured by how she's judged by men, but by how she sees herself.
My favorite characters here are Cybil and Rebecca (Summer Phoenix). Cybil is just too cute with all her crazy hairstyles and that dry comeback to everyone's compliments ("It doesn't matter."). Rebecca is Andrea's sort- of guide through the "underworld" of guys, music and pop culture.
"Girl" isn't exactly like the book, but for what it is it's better than 99% of the teen tripe that's being produced these days which make teens look like [jerks]. This film shows how hard choices can be, how overwhelming love is, and how much teens really just want to be accepted and allowed to simply live without constant peer pressure and judgement. And in the end, it shows that they do learn from their mistakes and can be redeemed as they grow into adulthood.
(I gave this 4 stars out of 5 because I really hated all of the Todd Sparrow songs.)
55 helpful votes
56 helpful votes
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