Don't Talk to Irene (2017)
July 21, 2018 11:09 AM - Subscribe

Irene must endure 2 weeks of community service at a retirement home. Following her passion for cheerleading, she secretly signs up the senior residents to audition for a dance-themed reality show.
posted by larrybob (2 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Irene starts her first day of high school. She wants to be a cheerleader, but there is doubt that she will make the squad, but rather will be rejected because she’s fat. She ends up getting told by a mean girl that the “in” to get on the team is to lick the floor of the boys’ shower while the mean girl’s boyfriend records with his cellphone. The bullying is exposed but all three are punished by being suspended and forced to do community service at the neighboring retirement center, staffed by Barret (Scott Thompson of Kids in the Hall — did I mention that this is a Canadian movie?)

Irene’s higher power is a poster of Geena Davis in A League of Their Own which speaks to her in the voice of Geena Davis. After seeing an ad for a dancing team reality show on the retirement home television, Irene decides to organize some of the old folks into a cheerleading team. They practice, and despite attempts at sabotage by the bully, they triumph in their own way.

The writing is clever and I laughed a lot. I found the movie surprisingly fat-positive. There is a bit of violence but it’s not the only solution for bullying presented. I don’t think this is intended as a movie for teens, but rather for adults still processing their teen years (a process that never seems to end.) There is a peripheral gender-queer character who doesn’t really transcend sidekick and have their own backstory. There are a number of cliches (ex-cheerleader mom, for instance) but the movie seems to acknowledge the rote and move on.

It’s available free streaming on a platform I have access to.
posted by larrybob at 11:46 AM on July 21, 2018 [2 favorites]

Well this sounds custom-made for my Friendmas Viewing List, so thank you!
posted by Gin and Broadband at 2:00 PM on July 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

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