Saturday, June 23, 2007

Movie Review: Nancy Drew

I have just returned from watching Nancy Drew. What a delightful and fun film this was! Bill and I both enjoyed it.

In River Heights, there is no mystery that Nancy Drew (Emma Roberts), a resourceful teen, can't solve. Nancy Drew has a reputation in her small town as a successful sleuth who gets into some pretty scary situations. When her widowed attorney father (Tate Donovan) accepts a temporary job in Los Angeles, he makes her promise that she will stop sleuthing. However, she has already made plans for them to move into the home of a Hollywood starlet who mysteriously died decades ago.

Nancy enrolls at Hollywood High, where she attempts to fit in and behave like a "normal" teenager, but her good manners, cleverness, creativity, and concern for others immediately set her apart from her self-indulgent, self-absorbed peers who can't quite figure her out and give her a hard time. Nancy is an old-fashioned kind of a girl who loves old things - which is reflected in her early 60's style dress (plaid skirts, knee socks, and penny loafers) and the classic car (a blue roadster) she drives.

Despite her promise to stop sleuthing, Nancy can't resist the urge to part with her passion, and becomes involved in unraveling the baffling mystery of the death of famous actress Dehlia Draycott. Nancy discovers that Dehlia had an illegitimate child, Jane (Rachael Leigh Cook), now a single mom with a daughter of her own struggling to make ends meet.

Nancy is assisted in her adventure by 12-year-old Corky (Josh Flitter), who has a crush on her and her shy, but sweet boyfriend from back home, Ned Nickerson (Max Thieriot), who comes to deliver her blue roadster.

Nancy Drew is the most appealing character in the film - her old-fashioned charm, her altruistic character, and wit will delight viewers. Corky and Ned are sweet, lovable characters, while the dad is nice, but a little quirky.

My only criticism of the film is that one of the scenes could have been omitted. The filmmaker didn't really need to include the scene where Nancy's father approves of the out-of-control teenage party at their home, affirming that this is "normal" teenage behavior. It wasn't really amusing and the film went flat during this scene. However, this is a minor flaw.

Overall, I enjoyed Nancy Drew and hope to see sequels to this film that involve Nancy in even more difficult and complex cases.
This film is a good one for both teens and adults. Children under 12 will most likely be bored with it and it is inappropriate for that age group.

It is rated PG for mild violence, thematic elements and brief language. It includes a character born out of wedlock, some mild innuendo, and mild parental disobedience.

My rating: B

Three out of a possible four stars. ***

Official Site: http://nancydrewmovie.warnerbros.com/

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