Revenge Tour

Star Angourie Rice and on-screen mom Jenna Fischer are perfect casting in Mean Girls. It’s difficult to recall a more natural pairing than these two who seem ripped from the same genetic code without being even the slightest bit related.

As for the rest of Mean Girls, taking from the Broadway production and adding musical numbers, it’s effectively the same movie, even down to identical quotes designed to have viewers speaking in unison.

At Mean Girls’ heart is a positive theme, more prominently placed than before

It’s updated. High school is now linked to social media unlike in 2004, giving this Mean Girls a touch of the TikTok Generation. Using the songs, Mean Girls also expands the “lore” per se, with the popular Plastics clique’s personalities enriched, in particular Gretchen (Bebe Wood).

If there’s a winner in Mean Girls soundtrack, it’s “I’d Rather Be Me,” a fantastic piece suited to the contemporary setting with the artsy Janis (Auli’i Cravalho) speaking out for personal identity. Following a meeting in the gym of the school’s girls, with petty fights and childish taunting, the song hits exactly when it should and needs to.

The other musical additions? They’re fine, but take a brisk, simple 90-minute satire and stretch it near two hours, and Mean Girls doesn’t need that much time. A feisty revenge anthem is fun, but Mean Girls then begins trimming chunks of its first act, losing context and riding on expectations of seeing the original to fill in gaps.

At Mean Girls’ heart is a positive theme, more prominently placed than before. Less is hanging on Cady Heron (Rice) and her transition to public school and more on her ability to lift others up – until she makes her own villainous turn. Loaded with talent including the young casting of Jaquel Spivey to an underutilized Jon Hamm, Mean Girls spins a tale of acceptance and morals, all trimmed down to fit within the halls of high school. It’s functional, just meandering.

Video

Shot digitally, Mean Girls doesn’t look as such. A grain filter and lens softness dim the sharpness. Resolution lacks pop, but it’s certainly there behind the chosen aesthetic. Facial definition can pop in close. Oddly, it puts this remake in line visually with the 2004 original; the newer one looks vintage.

Great color is a notable helper though. Primaries glow and intensify, giving flesh tones warmth and other hues vibrancy. This is especially true of the Revenge Party musical number, set in a hallway painted countless colors.

A generous pop to the contrast brings some sizzle, helping lift some of the flatness in the other areas. Stellar black levels hit their deepest points.

Audio

Via Atmos, the school takes on extensive ambiance, in particular in the lunch room with all of the idle chatter. Every speaker lights up and engages. Bells ring out in the rears as needed with a touch of overhead use.

Songs generate the low-end thump, a deep and rich accentuation at peak.

Extras

While the bonuses look stacked, when you take out the music videos and sing-alongs, the three featurettes total just a few minutes. A short gag reel is fine, but hardly a meaty extra.

Full disclosure: This UHD was provided by the label for review. This has not materially affected DoBlu’s editorial process. For information on how we handle all review material, please visit DoBlu’s about us page.

Mean Girls (2024)
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
3

Movie

An overlong adaptation, the Broadway pizazz doesn’t add much of anything to Mean Girls other than length.

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