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Film / Sugar & Spice

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A 2001 crime comedy about high school cheerleaders planning a Bank Robbery.

Head cheerleader Diane Weston (Marley Shelton) has just been knocked up by her boyfriend, the football team's star player Jack Bartlett (James Marsden). Unfortunately, both their parents have disowned them, and they need a place to live, and more money than they have. So Diane has a brilliant plan to rob the supermarket's bank branch, with the help of the rest of the cheerleading squad. Also stars Marla Sokoloff, Mena Suvari, Melissa George, Alexandra Holden and Rachel Blanchard.

This film provides examples of:

  • Alpha Bitch: Averted. Diane is pretty nice to everyone, to the point of ultimately inviting Fern and Lisa to join the A-Squad.
  • A-Team Firing: The one time one of the guns accidentally goes off, it completely misses the redneck threatening them with a knife.
  • Based on a True Story: Based on a series of robberies in the Houston neighborhood of Kingwood in 1999 by four teenage girls who called themselves the "Queens of Armed Robbery" and spent the money on drugs and body piercings. The fact that they all came from upper-middle-class backgrounds shined a spotlight on drug abuse among seemingly successful and well-raised kids, and gained Kingwood an image as Stepford Suburbia where teenagers turned to crime to escape their Rich Boredom.
  • Clark Kenting: The girls perform the heist dressed as... cheerleaders... with rubber masks.
  • Color-Coded Characters:
    • Diane - Pink
    • Kansas - Black
    • Lisa - Green
    • Hannah - Purple/violet
    • Cleo - Red
    • Lucy - White
    • Fern - Gray
  • Deconstructor Fleet: A lot of the teen comedy genre is taken apart.
  • Fell Off the Back of a Truck: The "free" TV and VCR Jack and Diane's landlord "gives" them.
  • Fighting Fingerprint: A non-fighting version (and played surprisingly realistically, given the comedic bent of the film): Lisa recognizes that the robbers are trained cheerleaders because she witnesses them doing a lift to disable a security camera, followed by a cheer-style dismount, but she isn't able to identify any specific individuals through their use of the technique.
  • The Fundamentalist: Hannah and her family. Other than displaying some minor Holier Than Thou attitude against Kansas (when provoked), Hannah is generally good natured, though terribly sheltered.
  • Gasshole: Diane; farting seems to be a side effect of her pregnancy.
  • Genius Ditz: Jack is really dim, but a great salesman.
  • Genre Savvy: Deliberately invoked. The squad watches heist movies to come up with a plan. Also subverted in that they don't find anything useful.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Diane, a teenager, gets pregnant accidentally. Kansas suggests an abortion, but Hannah is horrified by the idea and says it's murder, urging her not to. Diane is set on having the baby already though before either of them says anything.
  • Honking Arriving Car: Justified Trope. On the day of the girls' supermarket robbery, the breaks on their getaway van don't work, so while picking up Kansas, they honk the horn as they approach her house. When she runs out within earshot, the other girls explain the situation, and Kansas has to jump into the van while it's still moving.
  • Menacing Mask: The A squad cheerleading group wear rubber Betty Doll masks during the robbery with the exception of Lucy who joins the group later with a rubber Nixon Mask. It doesn't help keep their identities hidden against Lisa who happens to be in the store during the robbery and recognizes them based on the pyramid stunt they perform to reach a CCTV camera to spray paint it.
  • Morning Sickness: A running gag is Diane's frequent need to vomit.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The guy they get their guns from is called the "Terminator".
  • Poke the Poodle: The girls watch heist movies to get ideas, but Hannah lives in a devout Christian household, and can only watch G-rated movies, so she watches The Apple Dumpling Gang.
  • A Simple Plan: Subverted; everything would've gone swimmingly if Lisa hadn't been there.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Cleo seems awfully interested in Conan...
  • Stepford Smiler: Diane. Marley Shelton's big anime eyes help the effect.
  • Teen Pregnancy: Diane gets pregnant by Jack unexpectedly. Both of them are teenagers in high school, and thrown out by their parents over this. The plot is set in motion since they need money, with Diane deciding along with her fellow cheerleaders to rob a bank for it.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Lisa. Her complete and utter disdain for the A-Squad shows with her interpretations of the events of the movie. While she points out flaws in an A-Squad's performance, the rest of the student body is happily cheering along with the cheerleading chants. At the winter sports pep rally she proclaims how scandalous it was that Fern got to be on top of the cheerleader pyramid and how disgusted everyone was. However, the routine itself (and Fern) got a standing ovation from the audience.
  • Waxing Lyrical: When Diane tells the other cheerleaders she plans to keep her baby, she tells a story similar to her own dilemma that appears to reference the Virgin Mary until it turns out she's reciting the lyrics to "Papa Don't Preach."


Sugar & Spice Epilogue

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5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue

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