Ice Princess

Cast:
Joan Cusack as Joan Carlyle
Kim Cattrall as Tina Harwood
Michelle Trachtenberg as Casey Carlyle
Hayden Panettiere as Gen Harwood
Trevor Blumas as Teddy Harwood
Connie Ray as Nikki’s Mom
Kirsten Olson as Nikki
Juliana Cannarozzo as Zoe Bloch
Jocelyn Lai as Tiffany
Michelle Kwan as Herself
Brian Boitano as Himself
Steve Ross as Mr. Bast
Paul Sun-Hyung Lee as Tiffany’s Dad
Roy Bradshaw as Tiffany’s Coach
Mark Hird as Nikki’s Coach

Analysis:
From geek to athlete – Michelle Trachtenberg plays science nerd Casey Carlyle who decides to do a physics project on ice skating and discovers that she has a natural talent for the sport. Joan Cusak is her feminist mother Joan, and Kim Cattrall is the ex-prom queen and Olympic skater who ends up guiding her into the skating world.

The movie has all of the hallmarks of a tween girl movie. Casey is not part of the “in” crowd, and she desperately wants to join. She has a mother that thinks she knows everything that is best for her, but does not really listen or understand what Casey is saying. There is a close friend that seems to be able to read her mind and also a nice guy that could become more. Fortunately the acting is pretty good, and the film uses real ice skaters so that the movements on ice look good.

Where the movie breaks down is follow-though. There are several characters that get little more than a few moments of film time. Her best friend from the beginning is lost until the final moments of the film. Some of the skaters look very interesting, but go undeveloped. Also the obligatory love interest has little screen time, and his actions seem a little out of place if you have not seen the same plot many times already.

Technically the movie is polished well. The cinematography on the ice is pretty and the soundtrack is contemporary and lively without overriding the action on screen. Michelle Trachtenberg is a good ice skater, and if there were any effects used to make her look even better, they were seamless.

Who should see this movie? Ice skating fans will love to have a movie they can call their own. Also, there is a constant resupply of teen girls that need new movies that address the problems that they face. Ice Princess is a cyclical girl coming of age movie that will resonate with many young women, but offers little more than a rehash of a cute story to people that have seen it before. The ice skating is glamorous, but secondary. The humor is low key and rarely gets more than a chuckle, while the action is all on the ice. Overall the movie is pleasant to watch and could be a nice night out for a family with a young daughter, other than that you need to like girl coming of age movies to really appreciate it.

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