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Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen

Starring Lindsay Lohman, Adam Garcia, Glenne Headly, Alison Pill and Carol Kane
Screenplay by Gail Parent
Based on the book by Dyan Sheldon
Directed by Sara Sugarman
website: www.teenagedramaqueen.com

IN SHORT: For those pre-teens who devour Seventeen magazine, or whatever is the current equivalent. [Rated PG for Mild Thematic Elements and Brief Language. 87 minutes]

Her name is Lola, a high school student
Torn from the New York that she loves,
to the "Deadville Jersey" subs

She's got one friend and, imagination
Her tales of city life are joys,
if she only had a boy

Then she could date him
But she's a geek and
When it comes to clothes and boys
she will never be a "toy" . . .

That may be a bit off the mark but we endured early Barry Manilow stuff quite enough when we were a kid so, if you can sing along to the above you're too old for Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen but you may be the parent of a just preteen, give or take, daughter who is perfect for it. That would include our niece who is firmly convinced that her uncle is an idiot because he wrote that Mandy Moore cannot act. (hee hee)

The Drama Queen of the title is New York City born Mary Elizabeth Cep (Lindsay Lohan), who has decided that a) she wants to be called Lola and b) grow up to be a famous actress. When mom (Glenne Headly) moves the family to suburban Dellwood, New Jersey, life as Lola knows it is apocalyptically over. No, check that. When the too dreamy to exist on the planet rock singer Stu Wolff (Adam Garcia) announces that he is leaving his band Sidarthur, then life is apocalyptically over. Lola and her one new friend, fellow Stu Wolff fangirl Ella Gerrard (Alison Pill) convince their parental units to allow them to take the train to New York's Grand Central Station, from there to head for the Elgin Theater and the farewell concert. What the parents don't know is that the pair is determined to crash the party that follows. It is a party which a fellow student, the rhymes-with-witch Carla Santini (Megan Fox) already has tickets to.

Carla, the most popular girl in school, and Lola have already locked horns in competition for the lead in Miss Baggoli's (Carol Kane) musical adaptation of George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalian -- no, it's not My Fair Lady. That would involve licensing fees. -- Eliza Rocks! features lots of "classic" rock tunes as its score, just the kind of stuff to keep the parents sitting in the back row of the movie theater happy, while their kidlets go solo in the front. That's really the strength of movies like Confessions lie. They're cut the cord films, perfect for kidlets on the verge of or just in young adulthood and just this side of completely uninteresting for the grownups. This demo is also at the age where girls start noticing boys. Lola's interest is in a boy named Sam (Eli Marienthal), who has no idea how to wear jeans.

Parental units will grimace when they see the one shot that makes that last sentence make sense. It's the only thing that approaches anything risque on the sexual front. Of more concern is the state that rocker Stu is in when he is introduced to our pair of intrepid fifteen year olds. He's drunk out of his skull, fallen into a pile of New York City garbage. Any grownups out there who haven't had a talk about substance abuse with their kids by now, prepare it. Other than that, there's very little in Confessions that should concern any parent.

And with the tight as a drum demographic target in mind, the film doesn't readily fall into our ratings scheme. There's nothing here to make any grownup without children want to see the film. There's lots here to interest the kids who want to shake the parental leash. We're going to put the rating at the grownup "dateflick level" since the date, theoretically, is truly one between the parent who lugs and the kidlets who want them left far behind.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Ten Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, he would have paid . . .

$5.00

We can ignore the fact that the Elgin Theater is famed in its Toronto home. The biggest screw up is that trains from New Jersey don't run into Grand Central Station. Haven't in years. Makes us wonder exactly where the screw up lies -- any adult New Yorker would catch the error, and we weren't the only one making the comment outside of the preview screening -- but we're far outside the realm of anyone who would care about such things. Ditto any kid that doesn't make the shlep from Jersey to New York.

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