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  • Drama
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Never mind the cheerleaders – the evangelical Christians rule the roost in this school. Top of the rung is fanatical Hilary Faye (Mandy Moore), whose patronage of Mary (Jena Malone) wanes when Mary’s good Christian boyfriend is forced out of the closet and into rehab. Gradually, events force Mary to question the extremism of the popular crowd and befriend cynical, Jewish Cassandra (Eva Amurri) and wheelchair-using atheist Roland (Macaulay Culkin). The film’s comical attack on spiritual hypocrisy is reminiscent of both ‘Donnie Darko’ and gay-rehab comedy ‘But I’m A Cheerleader’, and it’s easily as funny as the secular ‘Mean Girls’. Early scenes in which the schoolgirl imagines Jesus has told her to ‘cure’ her boyfriend by sleeping with him are no less hilarious for their messages about the dangers of a fundamental education. It’s a shame the closing moral about a more pragmatic, inclusive approach to spirituality is conveyed with such a heavy hand.

Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday October 29 2004
Duration: 92 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Brian Dannelly
Screenwriter: Michael Urban
Cast: Jena Malone
Mandy Moore
Macaulay Culkin
Patrick Fugit
Heather Matarazzo
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