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Review: Sexy and ready to kill in 'Girls Against Boys'

The movie plays out as some odd male fantasy about female revenge.

January 31, 2013|By Mark Olsen
  • Danielle Panabaker, left, Nicole LaLiberte and Andrew Howard in "Girls Against Boys."
Danielle Panabaker, left, Nicole LaLiberte and Andrew Howard in "Girls… (Anchor Bay Films )

In "Girls Against Boys" two young women go on a killing spree, seeking revenge against the men who have wronged one of them.

After Shae (Danielle Panabaker) is in quick succession dumped by her married lover and sexually assaulted by a young man she meets at a bar, she is drawn by her fellow nightclub bartender Lu (Nicole LaLiberte) into a psychotic spiral.

Lu coughs up a series of conflicting motivations of her own, until she finally admits she's doing it simply "because I can."

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Written and directed by Austin Chick, "Girls Against Boys" is some odd male fantasy of what female revenge might be like, sexy and enigmatically charged rather than haunting or scary or even just weird.

The film wants to have it both ways, leeringly lingering over LaLiberte in a baby-doll dress and over-the-knee socks with Panabaker spending most of the film in extremely short-shorts and vertiginous high heels while also taking a scolding, what-are-you-looking-at attitude to their display.

The action plays out as a series of underwhelming set pieces — a cop is harmed with his own gun, another guy is tied to a table and has his legs sawed off and a samurai sword appears just because.

Shae is also a student, and so there are snippets of feminist lectures heard throughout to try to frame the story as some kind of half-baked media-thesis masquerading as a sexy action pic.

In "Girls Against Boys" both sides lose.

"Girls Against Boys." MPAA rating: R for violence, some sexual content/nudity and language. Running time: 1 hour, 33 minutes. At Laemmle's Noho 7, North Hollywood.

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