Newest Reviews
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Iron Mask, The
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
Escape from Coral Cove
Swan Princess, The
Butterfly Murders, The
Lady is a Square, The
Zack Snyder's Justice League
Dark Rendezvous
Silk Road
Newest Articles
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
  Beyond Clueless Teen Dreams
Year: 2014
Director: Charlie Lyne
Stars: Fairuza Balk
Genre: DocumentaryBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: There was a spate of teen movies made from around Clueless in 1994 to around fifteen years later that did not receive a lot of critical attention, never mind love, but as they were aimed at the young have gone on to be treasured by Millennials as something they grew up with, an important link to their pasts which mean as much to them as whatever the heyday of the teen movie was for the older generations, be they the Beach Party series of the sixties or the eighties post-Animal House "outrageous" style of comedy and drama designed to make the audience see something daring.

But while the eighties had plenty of analysis, the same kind of efforts from around the turn of the millennium were neglected until pieces like this montage, essay documentary from writer Charlie Lyne, who made this kind of examination and collection his stock in trade - the BBC iPlayer epic Fear Itself, about horror movies, was perhaps his most visible example of this style. While these were rather sneered at as lazy, there were instances of them, such as Rodney Ascher's Room 237 or Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema television series, which caught the welcoming eye of film buffs.

Beyond Clueless was not so prominent, probably because it did not have a killer hook unless you grew up with these movies. And even if you did, finding a lot of people who had fond memories of, say, Disturbing Behavior was going to be a big ask, no matter how far Lyne went to clip it as proof of his theories. Ironically, the later, similar clip doc Romantic Comedy was made by the band who did the music soundtrack for this, Summer Camp, and as that had a bigger impact as far as its subject matter reached, it would probably supplant the earlier picture in many minds of those who caught it.

However, that was not to say Lyne's work here was worthless, as he produced some pretty decent montages from about two hundred movies, many of which went by too fast to identify even films you would have recognised - you read the credits at the end and think, hey, I've seen that! But you did not pick up on it. That said, some are given more space than others, revealing this genre to be obsessed with conformity to the point that it will celebrate non-conformity, but only to the very limits of adolescence, as after that you really have to grow up. And conform. Or else you're just a sad bastard (the ending of 13 Going on 30 comes across as more depressing than a triumph in this context).

Elsewhere, of course Mean Girls was under the microscope, being the epitome of the smart, funny post-Clueless teen flick, yet there was also surprising weight given to such items as horrors Idle Hands or The Faculty, both fun films that could do with more respect (or appreciation, anyway), and comedy Eurotrip which is revealed as a succession of gay panic situations for a protagonist in denial about his never-admitted gay sexuality. A few more instances of that strain of radical theory would have benefitted the documentary, but too often Lyne shied away from going for the jugular, perhaps because he held these in too much affection, so what you had was a lightly probing set of chapters that might make you want to check out some of these, some are very enjoyable on whatever terms you want to apply, but maybe you had to be there to get truly enthusiastic. Not a bad conversation starter, nevertheless. Former teen star Fairuza Balk provided the deadpan narration.

[Click here to watch on MUBI.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 179 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

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
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor


Last Updated: