Josie and the Pussycats | Chicago Reader

Josie and the Pussycats

This self-styled self-reflexive comedy asks the question, just how stupid are teenagers? Marketed to them as if its mission were to expose the ways other media products are designed mainly to take their (and their parents') money, the insultingly trendy post-postmodern tale rationalizes its own product placement by using overkill—the Target logo is ingeniously integrated into so much of the production design it's impossible to distinguish the abstract from the referential. The plot turns, naturally, on a scheme to encode in hit music tracks subliminal suggestions about what listeners ought to buy—it's an exposé of the mundane, in which the title band discovers it's been signed mainly to stimulate teen spending. The subliminal suggestion “Do not see this movie” is hidden somewhere in this review. Written and directed by Deborah Kaplan and Harry Elfont, based on characters from Archie comics. With Rachael Leigh Cook, Tara Reid, and Rosario Dawson.

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