Josie and the Pussycats

Rated 2.0 Go-Go’s-type power-pop songs keep this live action version of the Saturday morning cartoon and Archie Comics series from being unbearably irritating. The title trio (Rachel Leigh Cook, Rosario Dawson, Tara Reid) are no longer crime fighters but rockers who lament the sameness and lameness of pop trends (especially pre-fab Boy Groups) and place individuality, teamwork and friendship over materialism. They get a shot at stardom with help from two slithery record company conspirators (Parker Posey and Spy Kids villain Alan Cumming) and uncover a government-industry plot that weaves subliminal messages into pop recordings. The sour notes are all in a dumbed-down script, canned-ham performances that soon wear thin and such a macabre cameo in which MTV personality Carson Daly (Reid’s off-screen squeeze) and a cohort try to kill two Pussycats with baseball bats. Directed by Harry Elfont and Deborah Kaplan.