This past weekend we saw Whip It. It was a very enjoyable movie to watch.
When it hit the theaters, it received positive reviews. Consequently, I had put it in my mental filing cabinet to see it when it came out on DVD. By the time it came out on DVD, I had forgotten all about it. Seems to happen a lot to me these days. Oh well. Fortunately I finally remembered.
What was interesting were the reviews by Richard Roper and Roger Ebert where both had essentially the same review (that the plot was unoriginal and cliche ridden) but reached vastly different conclusions. Roger's review was positive: ""Whip It" is an unreasonably entertaining movie, ..." Richard's review was less positive: "The problem with "Whip It' is it's too damn cuddly and cute." In this instance, I am in tune with Roger's assessment: "Yes, the movie has cliches. Yes, it all leads up to a big game. Yes, there is a character's validating appearance near the end. Yes, and so what? The movie is miles more intelligent than most of the cream-of-wheat marketed to teenage girls." Most of all it was fun to watch.
A particularly refreshing aspect of "Whip It", was that the teams opposing the Hurl Scouts were never demonized nor portrayed as "bad". Competition as good clean fun! What a novel thought. The movie "A Knights Tale" (also a cliche ridden unoriginal plot) unfortunately made the mistake of following the standard formula of turning Count Adhemar into a true villain. Had the (competitive) relationship between William Thatcher and Count Adhemar been kept "clean", "A Knights Tale" would have been a much better movie. Finally, I get to divulge this annoyance after eight years!