Girls Town

Tucson Weekly

DIRECTED BY: Jim McKay

REVIEWED: 12-05-96

A film that tries just a little too hard to be gritty, Girls Town is the story of a group of teenage girls coping with loss, high school, and the predatory male. When Nikki (Aunjanue Ellis), a smart, pretty senior bound for Princeton unexpectedly kills herself, her friends bond together to fight their own sense of powerlessness and sexual exploitation with a mix of vandalism and violence. The dialogue for this movie was worked out by the actors in rehearsal, rather than scripted; the result is probably exactly the opposite of what director Jim McKay wanted--stilted, false and out-of-date. Part of the problem seems to be that the cast, led by Lili Taylor, is much too old to play high school-aged children; another problem is the mean-spirited set of events that deteriorate into plotlessness.

--Stacey Richter

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