A film heralded
as the best movie ever
, an opinion which I find overstated
. This movie just straight-up rocked
. Here's why.
First of all, let me voice a potentially unpopular opinion - cheerleading kicks ass. If you've ever watched professional cheerleading competitions, you probably agree with me. At its core, competitive cheerleading is really synchronized gymnastics. Now, this movie actually used a bunch of professional cheerleaders to make up the majority of its cheerleading cast, and so the choreography of the entire movie is fantastic.
Second, there's the plot. There are a couple of different plots going on here. Primarily we have the cheerleading competition plot, focusing on the tribulations of the cheerleading team captain, played by Kirsten Dunst, when she discovers that all of the cheers her squad has been doing for the last four years were stolen from an inner city cheerleading squad. Our captain wants to be ethical and still win. Some of her squad want to be unethical and win, and some want to be ethical and give the competitions this year a pass. Drama ensues, some of it damned funny. Then we have our typical love interest plot which is actually a sort of love triangle plot made palatable by the fact that the male protagonist is cute and has a lot of good lines, and his sister is a main character who keeps giving him shit.
Third, we have the dialogue and scriptwriting. Folks, it was just damned good. I'm not saying this script was great literature, but it did a great job of capturing the patterns and nuances[ of the speech of the population it tried to portray, while at the same time making the lines better and more interesting than what you'd actually hear at a high school.
Fourth, we have the eye candy. Lots of it. I'll freely admit that I think that Eliza Dushku is one of the most lickable women on the planet, although she is frightfully skinny. The captain of the inner city cheerleading squad is also quite attractive, as is our male protagonist.
Fifth, the ending was satisfactory. I lived in fear the entire first time I watched this that they were gonna end it in a way that would have pissed me off. Instead they ended it in a way that was fair to both sides of the conflict, and which I think made an important point about the nature of winning.
Sixth, there are so many little bits throughout the movie that are utterly hilarious. The song our love-interest/male protagonist writes, for instance, is hilarious. And the opening sequence is brilliant.