Heathers, Clueless, Mean Girls. We all love the evolution of teen queens throughout cinematic history but one gem seems to be largely left unnoticed. Jawbreaker! Happy #ThrowbackThursday
This film didn’t just create a teen queen, it killed the teen queen guys. The dark comedy is full of teen movie cliches, but in the best way possible, as a campy, fun flick.
The movie seems like a mash-up of Heathers, and Carrie with influxes of Clueless. Yet rather than a bubblegum flick, its mean, dark and exciting throughout.
The story begins with the four friends who rule the school, one of which has an impending birthday. For her special day her three besties stuff a jawbreaker in her mouth and stag a kidnapping. This gives you an insight into the type of sisterhood we’re dealing with.
When they pop the trunk of their convertible to their horror, the birthday girl is a deathly shade of blue with a protruding lump in her throat. Shaken, they do what any teen girl would do when they’ve made a mistake. Cover it up!
Rather than risk jail time they return the body to its bedroom and stage a rape/murder.In comedic fashion, duh. As young girls they obviously make a whole host of ameature mistakes such as losing a photo of the corpse, mixing up stories and oh yeah, getting caught in the act.
Caught by wallflower Fern, they have to keep her close and a typical ‘make the ugly girl pretty with a new hairstyle and makeover’ scenario takes place. Where the newly appointed member, guess what, becomes a Frakenstein monster and tries to overthrow the Queen B.
A series of filler story lines ensue including Julie departing the group racked with guilt only to be tormented by her former friends. A detective (played incredibly by Pam Grier) attempting to expose the girls, and uber-bitch Courtneys fall from grace.
Upon the release the film was both a commercial and critical failure, bombing at the box office and being named the worst film of the year!
Several elements of the film turn it from girly movie to gay cult classic. The soundtrack is crazy good. The fashion is over the top and spectacular. The production is slick with a fun story. Lastly, the dialogue is outrageous! Full of bitchy quips and quotable phrases.
Example: “I mean, food’s cool and all. It tastes good and you need it to live, but the mere act of eating involves thoughts of digestion, flatulation, defecation, even, shall we say, complexion defection.”
Rose McGowan, Julie Benz, Judy Greer and Rebecca Greyheart all do well as the teen queens, with McGowen an obvious stand out. She also takes part in quite the kinky sex scene involving Ethan Erickson and a popsicle we’re sure you’ll love.
Writer and Director Darren Stein said: “The jawbreaker just came to represent the duality of the poppy sweetness of the girls, of high school and of youth, versus the whole idea that this thing could break your jaw”
Our veridict is: 8/10 while not a widespread success, this flick is true 90’s packed with everything dark, camp and humorous. Definitely a must-see.