The To Do List (2013)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBB.5.

USA, 2013.   , .  Screenplay by Maggie Carey.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , , .  Music by , .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

High school is over, college awaits and all the expected pleasures of growing up and moving on are being anticipated by overachiever Brandy Klark and her friends:  in short, they’re looking forward to sex with college guys.  Brandy, who spent her entire scholastic career too busy getting top grades and joining every possible after-school club to ever get in some action with the boys, gets it into her head that she needs to show up in college with her virginity removed.  She hilariously decides on the scientific method, putting together a list of all sexual acts that she has heard about (most of which she cannot accurately define), then spends the summer trying to knock them off one by one.  Her eventual goal is to go all the way with Rusty Waters, her fellow neighbourhood swimming pool employee who looks godlike without his shirt and makes her crazy in the pants.  The film takes place in 1993 so a major plot hole possibility (why doesn’t she know about so many of these things when she can just google them?) is completely avoided, plus the fashions and popular culture references of the time are in full force and delightful to behold.  There’s the usual grab bag of silly gross-out humour (including a thoroughly tasteless scene involving pool poo), plus the post-Bridesmaids trend of having girls talk dirty so we know that they’re just as box-office potent as guys are, but what works best is a director who never tries to make this film more important than it is.  The jokes land lightly because they’re never overstated (not even when the main character squirts ‘s semen out of her mouth).  Best of all, the conclusion does not ruin it all by going in for some kind of acquired wisdom or nostalgic coming of age revelation.  Life is complicated and being young is hard, and this girl is just trying to get shit out of the way before moving on to the next challenge.  It’s a lot of fun, and  and manage some great moments as her parents.


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