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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

[5.25/10] The Runaways (2010)


The Runaways (2010)


"The Runaways" is a coming of age biopic, set in the 70's, that tell the story of Joan Jett and Cherie Currie, two rebellious teenagers from Southern California, who become the front women for The Runaways - the now-legendary group that paved the way for future generations of female rockers. Under the Svengali-like influence of impresario Kim Fowley, the band becomes a huge success, with Joan as the band's hard-rocking heart, and Cherie as the sex kitten. But the teens' stormy relationship threatens the band's future. Since I'm not a huge rock music fan, I suspected that this film won't be exactly my cup of tea. Nevertheless, I decided to give it a shot, and left a somewhat bad taste in my mouth. While visually "The Runaways" looks very authentic, as it depicts the period of 1970s quite well, it suffers from lack of likable characters, poor story structure and muddled unimpressive direction. The script is compendium of rock clichés, characters are a bit flat, and the plot feels forced and often incoherent. On the top of that, the music is pretty horrible. Acting-wise, "The Runaways" is mediocre. Kristen Stewart tries her best here, and while her acting is much much better than in "Twilight", she gives yet another dry and unemotional performance. Stewart has this bland expression on her face and there's this stiffness about her, that makes her uncomfortable to watch. It seems to me that she struggles to overcome that. And it shows. Dakota Fanning is also disappointing as Cherie, the moody lead singer of the group. She fails to evoke sympathy and to deliver a likable character. Michael Shannon's acting is over-the-top, he's mostly annoying to watch. Watchable, yet hardly engaging, "The Runaways" represents the cliché 'sex, drugs and rock'n'roll' quite well, but it just doesn't deliver much more than that.

6 comments:

stonerphonic said...

The story itself takes massive amounts of poetic license, but nonetheless was a half decent band bio.

I'm only in it for the music....

Nebular said...

If I have to be honest, I didn't like the music at all. I have nothing against the real "Runaways", but the singing in the film was pretty atrocious. Otherwise, I absolutely agree - half-decent is the word that perfectly describes this film. Thanks for the comment :)

Jaccstev said...

I think Kirsten and Dakota look like little kids trying to be grown ups in this movie.

Nebular said...

Jaccsy, that's exactly what I was thinking while watching it. Well-said and so true! :)

Dr Blood said...

The thing is that Joan Jett and Cherie Currie were just little girls when all this happened so the performances were spot on. I'd give "The Runaways" an 8 out of 10. Michael Shannon was excellent too. But, yes, the music was horrible.

Nebular said...

Ah, man.. I really wanted to like The Runaways, but as I said above, it left bed taste in my mouth. For me, performances were pretty mediocre, even Dakota's. At least we agree that the music was terrible :)