Monday, November 26, 2007

Can't Hardly Wait!

Price: $1
Run Time: 100 min
Director:Harry Elfont, Deborah Kaplan
Cast: J Lo Hewitt, Ethan Embry, Charlie Korsmo, Lauren Ambrose, Seth Green, Peter Facinelli, Freddy Rodriguez, Jamie Pressly, Melissa Joan Hart

The late nineties were a great era for pop compilations. Sure you may not have had Jock Jams, Now (that's what I call music), or any of the MTV buzz bin disks, but if you were a young teen at that time, you were exposed to such compilations whether you liked it or not.

The truth is, you probably liked it, at least on some level. All of those compilations I just named had at least one song on them that would appeal to any given kid. Even if you were a defensive disavower of all things pop at that point, I'd suspect a slight smile still comes across your face when you hear "I Like to Move it Move It".

Can't Hardly Wait is essentially a visual representation of a pop comp. It skates over the surface of nineties teen existence in a way that is ridiculously affable. It touches on much, but explores very little. As a result, the scenarios and characters we see are all vaguely relatable, but cartoonish enough to distance from our own personal experience. We enjoy the spectacle of the teenage experience, but are never subjected to the cringe inducing honesty of say, Freaks and Geeks.

What sets Can't Hardly Wait! apart from aforementioned short lived, but exceptional series, is that you don't have to have been a freak or geek to relate to it. There's a cursory overview of all high school experiences in there somewhere. To link it back to the beggining of this post, Can't Hardly Wait! is a compilation of John Hughes Greatest hits, with a few Cameron Crowe tracks thrown in to appeal to niche consumers.

Besides J Lo Hewitts unseen boobs (which apparently sum up the whole of her sex appeal), there is no tension beneath the surface here, but that's ok. This movie offers kick-ass moments like this:

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