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Whip It!

After Hard Candy and Juno I would have probably paid to see Ellen Page read from the Yellow Pages. This is a lot more enjoyable however. Once again though, Ellen completely dominates the movie (and yet we still cannot get enough of her). But she does have a good albeit unlikely looking supporting cast that includes Juliette Lewis (Natural Born Killers, From Dusk till Dawn), Drew Barrymore (Charlie's Angels) and Zoë Bell (Xena: Warrior Princess).

In structure it is your average dopey sports movie. First time director Barrymore (who also produced) and writer Shauna Cross (who wrote the novel "Derby Girl", which the film is based on) cover this up with lots of action and fun. The sport in question is Roller Derby, which is sort of like Quidditch on wheels. Since most of the audience has no clue, Barrymore kindly includes an explanation of the sport. Roller derby takes place on a circuit track that looks like a vellodrome to me. The two teams each have five players on the track — three blockers, a pivot and a jammer (scorer). Points are scored by the jammers, who earn one point each time they legally pass an opposing blocker or pivot. The sport is very unusual in that it is an all-female contact sport.

In the movie, Bliss (Ellen) must overcome her fears and insecurities in order to, as the tag line says, "become her own hero".



( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
19th Oct, 2009 18:06 (UTC)
I remember going to an SF con once where an actor told the audience that his co-stars had told him he needn't be nervous about appearing at a con, the fans would probably love him even if he read from the yellow pages. At which point he opened a phone book and proceeded to do just that.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )