Film review: Mean Girls (Musical) starring Tina Fey

From the comedic mind of Tina Fey emerges a fresh take on the modern classic, Mean Girls. The narrative revolves around the new student, Cady Heron (Angourie Rice), who ascends the social hierarchy, encountering the elite clique known as “The Plastics.” Led by the conniving Regina George (Renée Rapp), with her minions Gretchen (Bebe Wood) and Karen (Avantika), Mean Girls explores the challenges of high school life, love, and the quest for self-discovery.

mean girls poster collage

The story

So, we follow Cady Heron, the new girl played by Angourie Rice, as she manoeuvres high school life and faces off with the popular clique, “The Plastics,” led by Regina George. The story delves into the challenges of fitting in, finding love, and figuring out who you really are.

Cady teams up with Janis and Damian, the cool kids who warn her about the Plastics’ drama, especially Regina. Things get spicy when Cady falls for Aaron, Regina’s ex-boyfriend.

The trailer

 

The verdict

In many ways, the musical vibes with Mean Girls better than the original movie, thanks to Angourie Rice rocking Lindsay Lohan’s role. The whole high school comedy thing has this third life cycle, like Hairspray, The Producers, and The Colour Purple: movie, stage musical, and then a movie version of the musical. While I was a bit iffy about the 2004 movie, the musical adaptation brings a more enjoyable and dramatic experience, flaunting diva culture themes. The movie version captures this essence well, despite a slight dip in the super long third act.

Angourie Rice steps into Lindsay Lohan’s shoes, giving us a sweet Cady. Tina Fey is back as maths teacher Ms Norbury, and Jon Hamm plays a cringey sports coach / sexual relations counsellor. There’s also another iconic cameo, keeping the original spirit alive.

We witness the classic high school journey with Cady, guided by the cynical outsiders, Damian and Janis, acting as TikTok narrators. Cady’s exploration of the different cliques, especially the fierce “plastics,” brings back those classic Mean Girls vibes.

Renée Rapp nails it as Regina, the queen of blonde cruelty. Avantika Vantanapu as Karen, and Damian and Janis (played by Auli’i Cravalho, whom I interviewed when she voiced Moana), bring depth to the story. We dive into Regina’s not-so-warm welcome to Cady, sparking an interesting exploration of Cady’s potential transformation into a shallow “plastic.”

While Mean Girls (Musical) delivers laughs, catchy musical numbers, and classic gags, the subplot with Ms Norbury as a drug-pusher feels a bit forced. The final resolution and Cady’s life lessons take their sweet time. Despite these minor hiccups, the musical version breathes new life into the Mean Girls legacy, offering a fun watch for fans and a fresh take for newbies.

Pros:

  • Hilariously exaggerated high school scenes.
  • The “burn book” moments are comedy gold.
  • Nostalgia-inducing quotes for millennials.
  • Easygoing plot delivery makes it a comfy watch.
  • Characters feel authentic with flawless performances.

Cons:

  • Not suitable for young kids due to occasional inappropriate humour.

Mean Girls (Musical) keeps the charm of the original while adding a musical twist. Tina Fey’s creation continues to connect with audiences, providing entertainment and a stroll down high school memory lane. The musical adaptation injects new energy into the Mean Girls legacy, making it a must-watch for both fans and newcomers.

London Mums’ rating: 6/10

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