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The Delphi

The Student News Site of Delaware Valley Regional High School

The Delphi

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What movie are you most excited for this winter?

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Album art for Billy Joel’s new single “Turn the Lights Back On.”
Piano Man “Turns the Lights Back On”
Billy Joel releases new single after 17 years
Emma Haig, Social Media Editor • February 27, 2024
Benson Boone’s “beautiful” new single
Benson Boone’s “beautiful” new single
Reilly Botto, Reporter • February 20, 2024

“Mean Girls” 2024: maybe not so “fetch”

The 2024 remake of Mean Girls is not as fetch as the original.
Paramount Pictures
The 2024 remake of “Mean Girls” is not as “fetch” as the original.

The remake of Tina Fey’s 2004 hit film “Mean Girls” and the highly anticipated film version of the Broadway show “Mean Girls the Musical” have reached theaters.

Just as the previous productions, the film’s plot stays the same, but the overall execution was contrasting to the original film. Having enjoyed both the Broadway show and the 2004 original film, I had some prior knowledge of what would be occurring. This movie was more targeted to be a remodeled film version of the Broadway smash hit, and I feel that the marketing team did a disservice by not communicating this more clearly to its audience. 

The introduction of the movie seemed rushed. For those who have not seen the original productions, the beginning of the story is where audiences are introduced to Janis (Auliʻi Cravalho) and her friend Damian (Jaquel Spivey) who guide the main character, Cady Heron (Angourie Rice) through her first day of high school. Cady had been previously homeschooled in Kenya for her whole life and had just moved to America. Cady had no prior knowledge of what an American high school would be like. 

When Regina George (Reneé Rapp), the leader of the popular girl clique known as the Plastics, walks into the lunchroom, time seems to freeze completely. I think Rapp dominated the screen and played Regina George beautifully; Cady is enthralled with Regina’s strong presence. The directors successfully convey her imposing presence and demonstrate how she consumes the student body as well as Cady Heron. 

After Janice and Damien show Cady the ropes and the high school stereotypical cliques during lunch, the plot lost momentum. Basically, the audience is introduced to Janis and Damien, then Janice tells Cady to mess with Regina by posing as her friend and Cady just goes along with it? There is very little context given which I think was a rather careless decision. Maybe the directors were hoping that the audience would recall the movie or musical and make sense of the minimal context? 

Given that the film is meant to be an “insane,” exaggerated depiction of an American high school, the performance was outstanding.  They play a lot of clichés (stupid, attractive girl, gays who aren’t popular, jaw-dropping hot guys, nerds, etc.), but I don’t think that detracts in the slightest from the viewing experience. The jokes were well-timed and delivered with her blank, bewildered expression. Avantika portrayed Karen brilliantly, and the well-known performance, “Sexy” lived up to the expectations.  

While there is nothing wrong with creating a remake, what makes remakes good is the addition of something new to the old story. The only thing that was added to this movie was the portrayal of social media. As usual, the directors portrayed social media through the eyes of adults who do not know much about teenage culture. Using social media in this remake could have been a good opportunity for a modern spin on the movie to showcase the negative aspects of social media. Their incorporation of technology was instead stereotypical and felt awkward.

When it came to casting, Tina Fey did not make any mistakes. Reneé Rapp embodies Regina George from the moment she first appears on film. In the song “World Burn,” her voice proved to be powerful.  Reneé was the real star of “Mean Girls (2024)” and the ideal choice for the role. The casting of Jaquel Spivey as Damien Hubbard was yet another excellent decision. Spivey was a delight to watch as he brought his unique flair to the role and had the entire theater laughing repeatedly. I found Angourie’s innocence in her portrayal of Cady refreshing, yet I do however think her voice lacked among such amazing vocals by Auli’i and Reneé. 

Bebe Wood, who had played Gretchen, and Avantika, and had played Karen, seemed like the ideal choice for the roles. Karen by Avantika is charming and incredibly funny. Her interpretation of “Sexy” stole the show. She brought her own energy to Karen, which I thought was very enjoyable. Gretchen by Bebe Wood was done really beautifully. She expertly conveyed the emotional struggle and her fixation on attempting to win Regina over in the first part of the film. 

The film was decent, but it could have been better. I thought that the scenes in the remake felt rushed and incomplete, leaving the viewer to remember the film or musical and piece together what little was there. Rather than creating their own legacy, the “Mean Girls” of 2024 was meant to be a part of a greater one. It is a solid 20th anniversary present to those who have been here from the start. At least there are some entertaining new songs to enjoy, even though some people might find the original movie to be funnier and more engaging. I would advise anyone who hasn’t seen the original “Mean Girls” to view it before seeing this remake.

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Angelina Miller, Contributing Writer
Angelina Miller is a senior at Del Val and a contributing review writer for "The Delphi."
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