“I want some dirt,” says lil’ Lucy before she and her two girlie friends bury their time capsule. Friends forever? Hardly. Years later, Lucy (Britney Spears) is the nerd with music-on-the-brain, Mimi (Taryn Manning) the pregnant trailer-trash and Kit (Zoe Saldana) the snobby soul sister. Though not quite enemies, the trio takes a trip down memory lane after a nostalgic prom night. While they may still repel each other, it’s not long before a road trip brings the girls back to joy. Director Tamra Davis has successfully fashioned Crossroads as a virtual road map through a half dozen Afterschool Specials. In Alabama (“The Beautiful”) the girls ruminate on their dreamy driver Ben’s possible killer past. In Louisiana, Kit learns to tame her self-centeredness and spearheads a karaoke performance worthy of the Brady Kids. Once Lucy overcomes dance-rape from an overzealous extra, Texas becomes the stage for impromptu punching lessons, key-hunting expeditions (near Ben’s crotch, of course) and drunken-rape stories. Arizona is the prickliest state of them all: Lucy meets her runaway mother (Kim Cattrall), stares at a picture frame of her dog-boy half-brothers and learns that she was a “mistake.” Once the gang arrives in California, catharsis hits and everyone takes a loss (emotional, physical and otherwise). “We won’t drift apart again,” says the older, wiser Kit. Without a sense of humor or fondness for camp, Crossroads, in the end, resembles a Britney ego trip. Screenwriter Shonda Rhimes discovers 101 ways to have Britney sing and/or lip-sync on screen (to everyone from Sheryl Crow to N’Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye”—wink, wink) while Lucy’s diary entries are nothing more than excerpts from Spears’s “I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman.” Lucy singing along to Madonna’s “Open Your Heart” is genuinely endearing, a surreal reminder of the countless teeny-boppers currently engaged in their own Britney worship. Britney, though, is best when she leaves the good-girl routine behind and gets greased up with several of her closest friends and snakes. Sexless Britney is blasé Britney and Crossroads might as well be a dry-hump through a Baby-Sitters Club book.
- Paramount Pictures
- 100 min
- Tamra Davis
- Shonda Rhimes
- Britney Spears, Zoe Saldana, Anson Mount, Taryn Manning, Justin Long, Dan Aykroyd, Kim Cattrall
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