Trachtenberg. Joan Cusak. Comedy.
A high school student who demonstrates aptitude in math and sciences
opts to spend more time figure skating than her mother would prefer.
If you’re a mother of girls or a young girl, this is about
as clean and wholesome a movie about establishing your own boundaries
as you can hope for - give it a strong A-. For the rest of us, it’s
trying to obtain a physics scholarship to Harvard. In order to do
so, she decides to initiate a project to identify the formulas that
would allow local skaters to improve their skating. She intends
to do so by applying calculations concerning velocity and force
to the skaters’ movements.
out well, until she realizes that her findings won’t be too
meaningful until she can apply the formulas to herself, an amateur
skater at best. In doing so, she catches the eye of the local ice
rink’s owner, Tina (Kim Cattrall), a former professional skater.
point, the writers have adopted the standard sports movie/underdog
framework - underdog is challenged, underdog almost rises to the
challenge, etc. You’ve seen this all before.
also added in the battle for the young girl’s heart and mind
between her feminist mother (Joan Cusak) and Tina. Casey’s
mother despises the costumes of figure skaters and decries the ‘shelf
life’ of a professional skater. Tina identifies that Casey
can never compete at a professional level, because she isn’t
we’ve seen this a dozen times before as well, but usually
from the standpoint of a young man being torn between two competing
patriarchs (most effectively done by Oliver Stone in both Platoon
and Wall Street, but this is a G-rated Disney film).
entertaining and fun. Take a few parts of Bend it Like Beckham and
mix it with the stepmother elements of Cinderella, and you’ve
got a fine Disney film.
My only complaint is that I’m not sure that too many 16 and
17-year olds are telling their mothers, “I’m not giving
up my dream - I’m giving up yours.”
Had I done
so, I might be slaving away in a rock band in LA playing heavy metal,
a form of music that Rolling Stone has recently labeled “an
extinct musical genre.” Talk about limited shelf life.
Guess I’m just lucky…