ninth symphony films - movie reviews


DIRECTOR  -  tamra davis

RATED  -  pg-13

GENRE  -  teen

LENGTH  -  93 minutes

RELEASED  -  15 february 2002

DISTRIBUTOR  -  paramount pictures

OFFICIAL SITE  -  crossroads

ESTIMATED BUDGET  -  $12,000,000
crossroads - a shot from the film


buy the dvd from crossroads at

buy the dvd from crossroads at

three childhood best friends go on a roadtrip.

ben's car is a 1973 buick skylark custom convertible.


picture from crossroads

picture from crossroads

picture from crossroads


two out of four possible stars

Crossroads will never be considered the finest cinematic masterpiece that Paramount has to offer, but as a vehicle for its top-billed star, this movie makes sure that fans of Britney Spears will leave the film delighted. The film is utterly predictable and filled with what one may consider classic road trip scenes, and there is a sense that everyone who worked on the film actually had fun doing it. Which comes through in the delivery of all the actors.

The laughter seems real and although the script seems more childish than even the actors, as a piece of entertainment for young audiences, this film delivers. The story is quite simple and straightforward, allowing even the youngest members in the audience to understand what happens on the screen. And since Spears isn't, for the most part, acting like the sexpot she's recently turned herself into, parents with small children can breathe easy. It's incredible, but her character is dressed in modest pink outfits for much of the film.

And as crazy as it seems, the actors in this movie weren't given as good a script as they deserved. Their performances were suitable for the picture, though some of the dialogue was quite obvious and it seemed as though it had been put together the night before the shoot. Once Spears was attached to this project, it's possible that the production moved forward so fast that the screenwriter couldn't keep up and had to make up sub-standard dialogue just to keep up the pace.

Really, much of what is said in this film sounds quite prosaic and is more apt to elicit a laugh when it's not supposed to. Though the specifically humorous parts in the film are entertaining. But this again stems from the believability of the actors on the screen. Spears and company should be congratulated that they have managed to make a picture that more resembles any number of nameless road pictures, rather than last year's horrid pop-star to cinema-star display, Glitter.

Crossroads is much more mainstream than Glitter was and the film is better for it. Though it could be termed a semi-autobiographical film for Spears, in that her character wants to be a singer after high school, the entire film wasn't focused on her wanting to be a pop star. The film has much more interest in showing the relationships between the characters: how they suffered for the first half of the film, and how they became best friends (again) for the rest of the movie. The heart of Crossroads deals with three former best friends who, after high school graduation, decide to go on a cross-country trip together, though each has her own reasons.

Spears' character, "Lucy," wants to meet the mother who left her and her father several years prior. Zoe Saldana, who plays the popular and beautiful, "Kit," wants to see her fiancé, who is up to God knows what in Los Angeles while at college. And Taryn Manning, who plays the trailer park resident, "Mimi," wants to travel to Los Angeles so that she can participate in a musical star search contest. She also happens to be pregnant. Each of the girls has a different reason for going, though they also end up working on their relationships to one another over the course of the movie.

And Spears also has a love interest: a mystery man with a car, "Ben," played by Anson Mount, who agrees to drive them from their home in Georgia to Los Angeles. The movie proceeds in predictable fashion, with no real surprises occurring over any part of the film. Which may or may not bother audiences. People who come to the theater simply to see Britney Spears should be entertained. She laughs with her friends, sings a few songs, and is generally a likeable character. And her friends play their parts very well. Though people looking for good cinema won't find much to like about the film, for what it is, a somewhat cheesy teen road picture, the picture will please fans of Britney Spears.

Review by Kelsey Wyatt.

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