Sleepover

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Rating: PG

Starring:
Alexa Vega as Julie
Mika Boorem as Hannah
Jane Lynch as Gabby
Sam Huntington as Ren
Sara Paxton as Stacie
Brie Larson as Liz
Scout Taylor-Compton as Farrah
Douglas Smith as Gregg
Katija Pevec as Molly
Steve Carell as Sherman
Jeff Garlin as Jay
Kallie Flynn Childress as Yancy
Eileen April Boylan as Jenna
Evan Peters as Russell
Hunter Parrish as Lance

Special Features:
Audio Commentary by Director Joe Nussbaum and Cast

“A Guide to the Perfect Sleepover” Making-of Featurette

“Meet the Girls” Actress Profiles

“Ready, Set, Action!” Featurette

Sleepover Confessions

Gag reel

Behind-the-Scenes Photo Gallery

Original Theatrical Trailer

Other Info:
Widescreen (1.85:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
French and Spanish Languages
Mandarin, Cantonese, Spanish and French Subtitles
Running Time: 1 Hour 29 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is the official description of the DVD:

“In the summer before their freshman year in high school, Julie (Alexa Vega) has a slumber party with her best friends, Hannah, Yancy, and Farrah – and they end up having the adventure of their lives. In attempt to cast off their less-than-cool reputations once and for all, Julie and her friends enter into an all-night scavenger hunt against their “popular girl” rivals. Hijacking dad’s car, sneaking into clubs, evading Julie’s mother, and even a first kiss – anything is possible at Julie’s Sleepover.”

This DVD is rated PG thematic elements involving teen dating, some sensuality and language.

The Movie:
Despite the fact that Sleepover is primarily a film for junior high girls, there were a couple of reasons I was interested in seeing it. First off, I know director Joe Nussbaum from “George Lucas In Love”. He went from promoting his short film on the web to selling it online to directing a big feature film. It’s quite a treat to see someone have their dream of directing come true that way. I was very interested in seeing what he was able to put on the big screen. The other reason I was curious about Sleepover was Alexa Vega. After Spy Kids, I had a feeling that she could become a popular actress. But could she carry a movie on her own?

The final product isn’t that bad. It is very much geared towards young girls, but it has some redeeming qualities about it. The writing is pretty good and they manage to set up a number of amusing situations. Julie’s family is pretty entertaining. Her brother is a college dropout and longs for the glory days of high school. Julie’s mother goes out and parties at a club. Julie’s father attempts to do home repairs unsuccessfully around the house. Then her friends are an interesting mix of personalities. They go on adventures in a small, green electric car that definitely resembles a clown car. Their scavenger hunt across town creates some funny moments. Julie also has some fun lines like, “For the love of carbs…” and other cute stuff.

Alexa Vega ends up being a strong lead in the film. She’s cute without being overbearing and not so gorgeous that girls are turned off by her. In fact, she’s a bit of a tomboy in the movie. Vega is also funny and handles a lot of the comedy well. She’s adept at physical comedy as well as the one liners. The rest of the supporting cast is good, but the most fun is Steve Carell as Sherman the security guard. He’s a bit over the top, but he provides a lot of the laughs as he pursues the girls through the mall and neighborhood.

The music is not bad. It’s a mix of generic pop tunes and remixed 80′s music. They manage to find music that’s entertaining to two different generations.

In the end I wouldn’t recommend this movie to you unless you were a girl between the ages of 8 and 14. However, if you don’t fall within this group and you find yourself forced to watch it, don’t worry. There’s some good stuff here that elevates it above your typical young chick flick.

The Extras:
There are a fair number of extras included on this DVD. Here are the highlights:

Audio Commentary by Director Joe Nussbaum and Cast – The girls join Nussbaum for this commentary. While there’s a lot of giggling and girl stuff, Nussbaum always manages to get them back on track. The final result is an energetic and informative commentary that fans of this movie will love.

“A Guide to the Perfect Sleepover” Making-of Featurette – This is your standard “making of” documentary. All the cast and crew are interviewed. They discuss the music from the film, the stunts, the sets, and everything else.

“Meet the Girls” Actress Profiles – This is a series of little clips highlighting each of the four principal actresses. There’s behind the scenes footage, interviews, and other stuff.

“Ready, Set, Action!” Featurette – This is just a 1 ½ minute montage of behind the scenes shots.

Sleepover Confessions – The main cast members talk about their favorite or least favorite memories of sleepovers from the past. It’s funny to hear about the things the older actors tried to get away with when they were younger.

Gag reel – This is your standard gag reel featuring the actors flubbing lines, making funny faces, and other antics from the set.

The Bottom Line:
Young girls will love Sleepover, but others should be able to enjoy the funny story and dialogue as well.

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