Pretty Persuasion
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One of the "popular girls" decides to put her mean streak to work in this black comedy. Kimberly Joyce (Evan Rachel Wood) is an outwardly friendly but inwardly cold and manipulative teenager who attends an exclusive private school in Beverly Hills when she's not making fun of her twentysomething stepmother (Jaime King) or listening to her business mogul father (James Woods) rant about the many people he hates. Kimberly's best friend is Brittany (Elisabeth Harnois), who doesn't seem to notice that Kimberly holds a bit of a grudge over the fact Brittany is now dating Troy… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 32%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Good writing aside, this screenplay contained the elements of two different films. One of them might have been quite persuasive."
‑ Susan Walker, Toronto Star
"The screenplay by Skander Halim falters. It's too convoluted and cloudy to have the intended effect."
‑ Joey Guerra, Houston Chronicle
"Probably the darkest high school film since Heathers, which is no bad thing."
‑ Matthew Turner, ViewLondon
"The very dark comedy is about the crossing point of righteousness and exploitation."
‑ Mark Palermo, Coast (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
"An often-funny movie that has two dumb ideas for every good one."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"Extremely well written in the fearless way of a smarty pants on a roll in the university cafeteria."
‑ David Gilmour, Globe and Mail
"Self-conscious, overdone, shallow, and just not up to the level of its star."
‑ Janice Page, Boston Globe
"Solid performances make it work, even if the film seems slightly undernourished."
‑ Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
"The movie -- a variation on the standard teen comedy -- is quirky and funny, but ever so dark."
‑ Forrest Hartman, Reno Gazette-Journal
"Muckrakes in such a convoluted, bizarre way that it threatens to become what it seems to be satirizing: A racist, homophobic, mean-spirited tract."
‑ Bruce Kirkland, Jam! Movies
"Wood's fine work is undermined by the movie it's trapped in, which feels like a rough draft of itself: Skander Halim's screenplay is unnecessarily twisty and gimmicky, and some of the teenspeak dialogue falls flat, already out of date."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"The film is as disturbing as it is amusing, reveling in the hypocrisy of its hopelessly dysfunctional world."
‑ Bruce Feld, Film Journal International
"a dark teen comedy that tries way too hard to be a dark teen comedy"
‑ Carlo Cavagna,
"“Pretty Persuasion” is a formidable effort that shows how powerful, rich, pretty young girls might get their way if they just stop feeling and just start thinking."
‑ John Esther, Pasadena Weekly
"Matches the glossy, calculated kinkiness of a pay-cable television series to a story that unfolds like a Young Adult author's stab at a Bret Easton Ellis novel."
‑ John Beifuss, Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
More reviews for Pretty Persuasion on Rotten Tomatoes