Josie and the Pussycats

Rated 3.0 This is one schizophrenic piece of work, a subversive anti-advertising satire that at the same time is all about shameless self-promotion—a Fight Club for bubble-gummers. After a record company exec is forced to “terminate the contract” of his flavor-of-the-month band Du Jour (a brilliant set piece that eviscerates the boy-band phenom) when they stumble upon his nefarious plot to brainwash the youth of America through subliminal messages (hidden beneath the music tracks of their upcoming CD), he recruits the titular band (riot grrrl-lite) to be the label’s “next big thing”… but these small town girls aren’t as naïve as they seem. What follows is a migraine-inducing case of sensory overload (Empty-Vee friendly flash) and mixed intentions (while enjoying an overt dig at gratuitous product placement, if the studio actually got paid for each hyped product that is referenced in almost every single frame of this movie, then Josey has already made back its production costs) that is offset by catchy power-pop tunes, knowing satirical jabs, and a giddy sensibility that never flags. It doesn’t hurt that the feline-ious trio of Rachael Leigh Cook, Tara Reid (who actually turns in an endearing spin on the dim-bulb blonde cliché), and Rosario Dawson are so easy on the eye, either.