Plot: What’s it about?
With the biggest dance of the school year, the Centennial, just around the corner, Nicole (Melissa Joan Hart) is hoping her crush will finally ask her to accompany him. Soon however, fate strikes and a chance encounter with a cheerleader leaves her crush unavailable. In a similar romantic heartache is Chase (Adrian Grenier), a school vagrant who was just dumped by his girlfriend for not caring enough about animal testing. Chase and Nicole are also next door neighbors, which makes the next part of the story even easier. Nicole comes up with the idea to use each other to make their lovers-to-be jealous, and want them again. The plan involves turning Chase from a scrubby delinquent into a social success, which is a tough proposition. The two manage to put on an impressive front, convincing their former love interests, and the plan actually seems to be working. But they soon discover that they have more in common than they think, and they just might already have their destined loves, each other.
As you should be able to tell from the storyline, this is another teen romantic comedy, which means fans of the genre will enjoy, but others will want to tune in elsewhere. Of course, the storyline is superficial, with both parties simply using each other to achieve their goals, and the characters are very one dimensional and shallow, but that’s not the point of this movie. The movie is another upbeat and youthful film, which is more than enough reason for me to recommend it as a rental for uncynical readers. Sure, the acting is lacking, the storyline is shallow, but come on, you don’t watch this movie expecting Citizen Kane. You expect a perky and shiny movie, and that’s exactly what this is. I enjoyed Drive Me Crazy more than I thought I would, and I think those of you like this type of film will agree that it’s worth a look. If you’ve seen the movie and enjoy it, the disc is a nice buy, if a little light on extras.
The casting for Drive Me Crazy is just like most other recent teenage comedies, made up of an ensemble cast with a recognizable leading female actress. Here that actress is Melissa Joan Hart, best known for her starring role on television’s Sabrina The Teenage Witch. While she has some serious television talent, she seems more suited to supporting roles on the big screen, although she turns in a decent performance here. Adrian Grenier (The Adventure of Sebastian Cole), Susan May Pratt (Center Stage), and Stephen Collins (Baby-sitter’s Seduction) all provide some depth to the cast with passable supporting roles. Although Grenier has some serious screen time and even shares the cover with Joan Hart, it’s obvious the movie hinges on her. Drive Me Crazy also stars Mark Metcalf (The Stupids), Ali Larter (House on Haunted Hill ’99), Natasha Pearce, and Kris Park.
Video: How does it look?
Drive Me Crazy is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. As with many of these peppy teen movies, the colors are juiced to the Nth degree, so some bleeding and minor oversaturation does occur. Given the amount and intensity of the hues, it’s surprising the colors don’t mess up more. Black levels seem correct, with no detail loss and only minor shadow layering problems. On the compression front, some shimmering appears, but nothing to get worked up about.
Audio: How does it sound?
Again, Drive Me Crazy takes the same path as it’s genre brethren, using a hip soundtrack that dominates the audio. The surrounds will come to live during the music, which sounds full and rich. Aside from that, you’ll notice some limited subtle use, but not much. Dialogue is excellent though, with nice clarity and a reasonable volume.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The disc includes the theatrical trailer, four television spots, and two music videos. I love Tv spots, and was very pleased to find them here. The music videos are from Britney Spears and Jars of Clay.