Prayer Focus
Movie Review

Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen

MPAA Rating: PG for mild thematic elements and brief language

Reviewed by: Nicole LeBlanc
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Kids
Genre:
Comedy and Romance
Length:
1 hr. 36 min.
Year of Release:
2004
USA Release:
______
Featuring: Lindsay Lohan (Freaky Friday), Adam Garcia (Riding in Cars With Boys), Megan Fox, Alison Pill (Pieces of April), Glenne Headly
Director: Sara Sugarman
Producer: Jerry Leider, Robert Shapiro
Distributor: Touchstone Pictures
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Touchstone Pictures

Lola thinks that her life has reached an all-time low when her single mom Karen makes her leave exciting New York City and move to the “new planet” of New Jersey. Reality soon proves that her upturned life can fall further yet. In addition to being separated from her popularity and the city that could offer her chances at becoming an actress someday, her absolute favorite rock-and-roll band, Sidarthur, is breaking up.

But Lola meets Ella Gerard on the first day of school and an instant friendship forms. Although Ella is a socially awkward girl, she possesses a similar obsession with Sidarthur and its lead singer Stu. And school can’t be so bad when there’s the local hunk Sam to think about. Yet things don’t improve, because snobby Carla Santini—who just happens to own tickets to Sidarthur’s last performance and party—knows how to make life miserable. Lola has to fight for the oh-so-important lead part in the school play, and she has to come up with tickets for the last performance of Sidarthur. (If not for her love of the band, then to prove that she has tickets like she said she did.)

THUMBS UP: Lola openly loves her separated parents, and she doesn’t dwell on the fact that she was forced to leave New York. She didn’t want to move, but now that she has, she focuses on making the best of it. Her parents are portrayed as caring, and they are quite patient with their emotional daughter. Although Lola’s character comes across as emotional and a bit wild, she never resorts to alcohol, drugs, or sex. There is mention that Lola was a “love child,” but Lola says that her parents were both in love and married. Lola finds out that her dream guy Stu the handsome and popular singer—is not who she made him out to be. When she and Ella find him drunk, she realizes that this dreamy star isn’t worthy of her idolization (she does defend him at first, however, by saying that all geniuses drink.) Friendship is also a positive image portrayed in this film. Carla tells Lola that she has to choose between popularity or awkward Ella. Lola chooses her friend.

THUMBS DOWN: I was disappointed with how freely Lola lied. When Lola doesn’t have permission to have a certain dress, it’s no problem because Sam helps her “borrow” a dress from the costume room. She pretends to go on a hunger strike. She lies to Carla and says that she has tickets to the Sidarthur performance. She does often receive consequences for her actions, but she never really comes to terms with the importance of honesty. Some conservative viewers may feel uncomfortable when Lola dances somewhat inappropriately. She also wears a very short, form fitting outfit that is not modest for anyone, never mind a fifteen-year-old girl. There are also midriff revealing shirts, Carla shows some cleavage, and Lola—through the camera’s point of view—stares at a guy’s clothed backside.

Some other possible, uncomfortable scenes include a poster portraying a shirtless young man with his guitar, a brief kissing scene, and there are some objectionable phrases or words, such as “crap” or “Oh my G*d.” Lola is also a bad influence on her friend Ella, who doesn’t find lying to be as easy as Lola does. When Ella finally gets grounded for lying, Lola tells her that she is proud of her.

CONCLUSION: Somehow I left this movie thinking that only the surface of character development and plot had been scratched. The slap-stick comedy and humor were sometimes overplayed and just not funny. For example, when Lola pretends to go on a hunger strike and acts like she is meditating and chanting (while really eating pizza in the meantime), I found it to be yet another example of Lola’s childish escapades to get her own way. Although she does lose her allowance as a result of her lying about the hunger strike, the audience is left wondering if she really learned her lesson.

Maybe the most bothersome thing about this movie, however, is its message. Lola’s worldly desires may seem selfish and childish at times, but they are the center of the whole film and are not rebuked. This goes against Christ’s message of storing up your treasures in heaven and not on Earth. While “Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen” may be clean according to today’s standards, some Christian families might choose to bypass this film due to the shallow plot and worldly message.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Negative—I was very disappointed that the main character (Lindsay Lohan) lies throughout the entire film. She is not occasionally dishonest, she lies about everything. Because she is so cute and the film well-made, it sends the message that lying is okay. She also steals “borrows” she says. Worst yet, she gets her way in the end and everything turns out hunky-dory for her character. Not the message I want to send to my pre-teen daughter. I truly disliked an emotionally charged scene at the end of the movie when her friend (who was morally upright until poisoned by Lindsay Lohan) breaks down in tears and says something to the effect of: “What about me? I was miserable before I met you. I thought I had to do everything I was supposed to do. The most I could aspire to was a life like my parents’.” This “realization” on her part that not doing the right thing was much more fun than doing the right thing completely undermines everything we as Christian parents are striving to teach our children.
My Ratings: [Very Offensive/4]
—Kim, age 41
NeutralLindsay Lohan as usual does an excellent job with her acting, and the storyline has a satisfying end given all that leads up to it. Having her singing and doing a pretty good job at that adds to it as well. In that sense I enjoyed the film quite a lot, and got a few laughs out of it. From my spiritual standpoint, however, I found some things to be lacking. Of course, I can do that with most any movie or book, but I’m feeling like Disney is slowly pushing the limits more and more. You see a few too many low cut shirts and leaning over, plus suggestive dancing. Now granted, that’s nothing you won’t see in everyday life, and the dancing was for a school play/musical, but I think they could have cleaned that up a bit.

Language was pretty good throughout, not much to complain about there. The Ghandi bit was rather revolting to watch, and had it not been in Lola’s dramatic manner, it would have been over the top. Overall, I’d say it’s a pretty good movie with a fine performance by all. The whole “Drama Queen” bit may or may not be to your taste, you should watch the trailer to see what you think on that end. I just wish that Disney wouldn’t push the envelope, because I don’t think this quite makes the cut for a true “family film.”
My Ratings: [Average/4]
—Ken Goding, age 19
Negative—I took my wife and two girls (15 and 12)to see this film and would have rather given my money to a poor person. My $41.00 was a total waste. Even my kids said it was not worth it. About half way through the movie, my wife turns to me and said, “This is the worst movie I have ever seen.” Lola (Lindsay Lohan) did a pretty good acting job, but the movie just did not really have a good point to it. If your looking for something to do for the afternoon, I would recommend doing nothing, rather than going to this movie. There were a few funny spots, but very few and far between. There were a few slightly objectionable dancing parts, but overall I believe it to be okay for my family and their ages. Bottom line: Do not waste your money.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/2]
—Scott Wold, age 42
Positive—This film was an inspiration, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I took all of my kids, and they all loved it too. Their was nothing offensive or crude in it, and it teaches a good lesson to viewers.
My Ratings: [Excellent!/4]
—Debbie, age 46

Comments from young people
Positive—I loved it! Yeah I’m a kid but I loved it!
My Ratings: [Excellent!/5]
—Rebecca, age 13
Neutral—This movie was really DUMB! It was just about how Lola (Lohan) and her friend wanted to go see this rock concert and will go to any means necessary to get there. They’ll lie and steal (Lola called it “borrowing”) to get there. It was dumb how the two girls were in “love” with the two guys from the rock concert, apart from being sick, I mean. The girls wore clothing that exposed way to much and the was some swearing in it. Although it was the LORD’s name in vain, it only happened 3 or 4 times tops. Apart from that, it had a few funny scenes, really good music, and good acting. My opinion was that it was dumb, Dumb, DUmb, DUMb, DUMB!
My Ratings: [Average/1½]
—Hannah Mitchell, age 13
Neutral—This movie was advertised as a great teenage film, but the movie itself showed otherwise. At many parts during the story it became quite difficult to find the main idea. It had almost no offensive material; however, in a Christian perspective, the main character does lie on a daily basis and steals during the duration of the film. Some parts such as the dancing and oddness of teachers and dreams could be funny at times, but my advise to you would be to wait till this one comes out to rent.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3]
—A.I., age 12
Positive—…I was very pleased. Me and my friends had a blast!!!… It was mostly clean, with one joke about Lola being a “love child” and her role-model, (a rock star) getting drunk twice. In the end though, she figures out he’s not all that wonderful and tells him so. He then decides not to get drunk anymore. Overall, this movie is cute, clean, and funny. Go see it!!!
My Ratings: [Good/5]
—Cara, age 13
Positive—I thought that this was a great movie! It starts out kind of well, stupid, but it became a great movie! It wouldn’t be a must must see, but if you have some time and you want a good family movie, this would be a great one!
My Ratings: [Good/4½]
—Vicky, age 11
Positive—This was a GREAT movie! I had a blast watching it with my friend!! …I will absolutely buy the DVD.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/4]
—Angela, age 16
Neutral—This film was okay. It was a little boring and the main character is boring. As a matter of fact, the whole movie was just, in one word, boring.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3]
—Mercy, age 14
Neutral—This is a good movie for the mature younger audiences for some mild elements, but none the less a cute comedy for kids. When I saw the previews for “Drama Queen” I thought it was going to be really good, but looks can be deceiving, because I personally thought that every thing went too fast—all the comedy was like boom boom boom boom. I didn’t like that, and at the end, the song for the play was remixed in a weird way that wasn’t like the real song, but other than that, a good movie.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/2½]
—Jack, age 11
Positive—…pretty good! I disapprove of how she lies a lot, but that’s pretty much it. I’ve been a total drama queen my whole life, and now I finally have a movie I can relate to! I enjoyed it, but it did have a few dumb parts.
My Ratings: [Good/4]
—Brittany, age 14
Negative—This movie was horrible. Lola was stuck up and only cared of herself. The graphics were bad, but I have to admit Lindsay Lohan has a good voice for the singing. But the point of the movie was not worth watching. I don’t want to see that movie again.
My Ratings: [Average/1]
—Kirstin, age 13
Positive—I really wanted to see this movie and when I did I was disappointed, The clothing wasn’t a big deal but I thought it could have been a lot better. At least it was funny!
My Ratings: [2]
—Carlene, age 13
Negative—I’m not a chick flick movie girl, but all my friends decided to go and told me that they would pay for me, so I went. I’m glad I didn’t pay to see that movie! The clothes that she wore weren’t all modest, but it’s what you see and maybe a bit more in everyday life, or at the mall. I found some of the stuff she did to be pathetic… really immature and dumb (nothing bad but just plain dumb like… who in the world would do that ??!!)

It was good that she met this guy and told him off so that he should stop drinking and that he listened to her advice. I was happy that that happened! This is a real chick flick. I wasn’t at all impressed with it…
My Ratings: [Better than Average/1½]
—Mosoko, age 13
Movie Critics
…Few redeeming values in parable gone awry… a star vehicle with three flat tires and sugar in the gas tank… It’s just not funny…
—Robert K. Elder, Chicago Tribune
…a letdown… for the most part the material is stubbornly inert, and the actors at times appear to be flailing… Awesome if you’re a 10-year-old girl, a bit of a chore for most everyone else…
—Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter
…cliches of all recent American adolescent girl comedies…
—Ed Blank, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
…Lohan …manages to rescue the film from the teen-movie trash heap with a pleasantly quirky performance…
—Bill Muller, The Arizona Republic
…would seem more at home on the Disney channel than on the big screen-it’s strictly after-school special material…
—Bob Waliszewski, Plugged In