Pin It
Favorite

From Prada to Nada 

Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility gets the East L.A. treatment.

click to enlarge art16521.jpg

Gilmore Girls, Gossip Girl and Easy A have shown how witty, fast-paced, hyper-stylized dialogue and precise, confident acting can make a drama aimed at young women incredibly entertaining.

That’s not the case here. Instead, the young actresses in this 2011 comedy spit out line after line of painfully expositional dialogue, like “What would you know, you’re 24 and you haven’t been kissed,” and “I’ve built my whole life on the one thing i could control, which is my career.”

Mary (the fashionable one) and Nora (the smart one), two wealthy Latina daughters, live in a mansion with their father. But when their dad dies of a heart attack on his birthday in the opening montage, the two daughters discover that their father had been bankrupt all along. Moaning and complaining, they’re forced to move to the east Los Angeles “barrio,” a cartoonish land of leering construction workers and glaring hoodlums.

The contrast between worlds never goes much deeper than “rich Latino people act like this” and “poor Latino people act like this.”

It’s a loose adaption of Sense and Sensibility, in the same way 10 Things I Hate About You is an adaption of Taming of the Shrew.

One problem: The drama of Jane Austen’s 19th century world in Sense and Sensibility — where young society women fret about marrying rich young society men — doesn’t really translate to American women in their early twenties.

And the acting can’t compensate.

In the opening hour, alexa Vega (Spy Kids), as Mary, acts less like an actual spoiled girl, and more like a spoiled girl playing a spoiled girl in a high school play.

In the final half-hour, the actresses loosen up and even have a sort of charming charisma. But by then, the audience has watched far too much ambling, whining and exposition to care. (rated PG-13)

Tags:

  • Pin It

Latest in Film

  • Safely Outrageous
  • Safely Outrageous

    Horrible Bosses 2 depends on the most predictable kind of transgressive humor
    • Nov 25, 2014
  • Katniss Strikes Back
  • Katniss Strikes Back

    The next installment of the Hunger Games series is sequel gold
    • Nov 19, 2014
  • Growing Up
  • Growing Up

    Seattle director Lynn Shelton delivers another unpredictable story with Laggies
    • Nov 19, 2014
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue

All of today's events | Staff Picks

or

More by Daniel Walters

Most Commented On

  • Hairy Matters

    L.A. glam-metal pioneers Mötley Crüe are calling it quits, and that's not necessarily a good thing.
    • Nov 19, 2014
  • More »

Top Tags in
Music & Film

Film


Music


Review


Cover Act


Jazz


© 2014 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation