HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Annette
Shepherd
Dying to Divorce
Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn
Trouble with Being Born, The
Last Matinee, The
Strings, The
Free Hand for a Tough Cop
People Just Do Nothing: Big in Japan
Dear Future Children
Accidental Luxuriance of the Translucent Watery Rebus
Swallow
Thin Red Line, The
Petite Maman
Fast & Furious 9
Sundown: The Vampire in Retreat
Sweet Thing
Maelstrom
Father, The
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Night House, The
Father of Flies
80,000 Years Old
Dead & Beautiful
Bull
Censor
Sleep
Freaky
Nightbooks
Whisker Away, A
Wild Indian
Whale Island
Chuck Steel: Night of the Trampires
Don't Breathe 2
Closing Time
Cryptozoo
Weathering with You
Rim of the World
Love & Basketball
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time
   
 
Newest Articles
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
Vestron Double Bill: Dementia 13 and The Wraith
Farewell Dean Stockwell: His Years of Weirdness
Kung Fu Craft: Cinematic Vengeance! on Blu-ray
999 Letsbe Avenue: Gideon's Way on Blu-ray
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
   
 
  Josie and the Pussycats And Now, A Word From Our Sponsor
Year: 2001
Director: Harry Elfont, Deborah Kaplan
Stars: Rachael Leigh Cook, Rosario Dawson, Tara Reid, Alan Cumming, Parker Posey, Gabriel Mann, Paulo Costanzo, Missi Pyle, Seth Green, Tom Butler, Carson Daly, Aries Spears, Alexander Martin, Katharine Isabelle, Donald Faison, Seth Green, Breckin Meyer
Genre: Musical, ComedyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 8 votes)
Review: The boyband Du Jour are the biggest thing in music, selling millions of records, packing the fans in at stadium concerts, and shifting merchandise by the ton. However, after one personal appearance, they are on their private jet when they ask their manager (Alan Cumming) about the curious background noise on their songs. This is his cue to fetch the pilot and jump out of the plane with parachutes, leaving the band to die in a crash. Now he needs a new band to exploit: what about... The Pussycats, an unknown all-girl band from the local area, currently trying to get off the ground by playing bowling alleys?

They are swiftly signed to Megarecords and hyped as the next big thing - but they too find out their records are being used for unscrupulous goings-on, which was where the biggest bone of contention lay with audiences and critics alike back in 2001. This was a satirical musical comedy based on the Archie comic book and the subsequent cartoon series from Hanna Barbera, one of their Scooby-Doo clones that littered kids TV schedules, and indeed still were in reruns when this was released. The Pussycats in the movie were the superbly-cast trio Josie (Rachael Leigh Cook), the leader, Valerie (Rosario Dawson) the smart one, and Melody (Tara Reid), the daft one, and they played, well, I suppose you'd call it bubblegum rock.

Initially unbeknownst to the band, their music is laced full of subliminal messages to brainwash the kids into buying whatever the huge corporations want them to buy, and the film makes a big joke about how easily led people are by the power of advertising and how it has drenched everyday life. But that was pretty hard to take when not a minute goes by without yet another item of product placement appearing on screen - even though the producers received no money for them, and clueless critics amateur and professional alike were unimpressed with what they regarded as rank hypocrisy. By showing all those logos it makes its point, but the film was still a vehicle for advertisers, and fully aware of the double standards it was using for parody.

For such a throwaway, kitschy, breezy film, it was oh so refreshingly cynical, saying that you can't be successful wthout selling out, so that even if you did get where you were in the stardom stakes by sheer talent alone, you would need to play a very old showbiz game that secured that location in the celebrity firmament, and if you stopped, good luck sustaining that career for there was always someone new to take your place. Whether subliminals were needed at all to get the masses to behave like sheep was very much up for debate: you get the impression the crowd would have cheered even if the band had played "Shaddap Ya Face" or "Ernie (The Fastest Milkman in the West)" at the end. There was the usual moral about "being yourself" that you get in these types of teen movies, but even this was sent up mercilessly.

As a bonus, nice turns included Cumming and Parker Posey as the baddies, the latter essaying the sort of power-crazed mastermind who would not be out of place in a James Bond instalment, though her motives are amusingly pathetic while remaining horribly relatable to the target audience. That could have been why Josie and the Pussycats was not embraced by the majority, it was telling the independently minded what they wanted to hear, but if you had genuinely liked the corporate pop of The Spice Girls or The Backstreet Boys, this was basically telling you your taste was led by the nose by banal but keenly applied advertising techniques. Fortunately, such harsh lampoons were lifted by a truly entertaining sense of the ridiculous. This would make a good double bill with They Live, another misunderstood cult item. Also with: a cheeky monkey called Dr Zaius, and outtakes at the end. So where's the Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels movie, then? Of course, all this subliminal advertising wouldn't work on me. Can't Hardly Wait really was underrated, wasn't it? Music by John Frizell.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 9398 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: