Unfortunately for McLeavy, I can't say she's my no. 1 anymore because I just watched Emma Stone blow every other actress of 2010 out of the water with her performance in Easy A. She has a way with a zinger - a cleverly written one or not - and a perfect balance of flamboyance and holding back. She never verges fully into caricature territory, but remains suitably bubbly and active throughout the film's entirety. She's like the Energizer Bunny's sexy, throaty voiced cousin. Plus, she has a veritable closet full of faces and expressions at her disposable - she's like a perkier Laura Dern. She gives a better performance in the blooper reel than most others gave in their completed films! I know I'm not the only one, and I can only hope more are willing to come out of the proverbial closet as time wears on.
I'm not sure if the movie is completely up to the task of supporting Ms Stone, but it does a fairly good job of it. Sure, the romantic interest played by Penn Bagdley is curiously under-developed, the religious subplot isn't taken far enough and comes off as a lesser Saved!, while I wish Dan Byrd - so fabulous on Cougar Town - had stayed around for longer. Easy A wears it's John Hughes influence like a badge of honour, although I could have done without the obviousness of it. I mean, for a film that wants to say something about teenagers it sure does assume a lot of them are idiots. Nevertheless, Emma Stone (and the fantastic adult cast) are always there to keep the film going strong. B+
Anyway, because she's so great, here are just some of my favourite Emma Stone moments from Easy A. And trust me, there were so many more that I could have included, but I had to draw the line somewhere, and screencapping every single face she made felt slightly excessive. Slightly.
"Thank you. They're Costco!"
"Isn't that always the way? The books you read in class always seem to have some strong connection with whatever angsty adolescent drama is going on. Except for Huckleberry Finn, 'cause I don't know any teenage boys who have ever run away with a big, hulking black guy."
"Perhaps you should get a wardrobe, you abominable twat!"
"I will take that challenge!"
"What the hell is a lemon squeeze?"
"I hope you don't mind, but we had a few pre-cocktail party cocktails. Like, before the cocktail party. With cocktails."
"What do you think I have down there? A gnome?"
"Put it in the pile of gifts from my other suitors."
"What's your problem?"
"You wanna know what my problem is?"
"No, that was a rhetorical question. I don't wanna know anything from you."
"He got a Coke Zero again? Oh that Roman. Incorrigible!"
"A is for 'awesome'"
"Sharpening you pencils? Getting them nice and sharp? Hmm? Sharpenin' 'em up? Look at you! Look at you! *gasp* So sharp! *gasp* Sharpening those pencils! Sharp, sharp, sharp, sharp! Ooh, god they're sharp!"
"So I guess I shouldn't be too shocked that these people wanted my diseased ass outta there. The funny this is, the whole time this all was going down I couldn't help but think I could have come up with better signs.
"Not now, Quiznos!"
"Knock, knock, knock on wood..."
"I know it interferes with the basketball game, but, come on, would you rather be here cheering on the Woodchucks or watch me do one?"
I don't particularly have the time nor the inclination to do what I just did but for all of the wonderful moments the rest of the cast have, like Lisa Kudrow's "I'm the guidance counselor, I should know all the students. Especially the ones that dress like prostitutes", but I wanted to single out the fabulous Patricia Clarkson. Isn't she just magical? She and Stanley Tucci ("It sounds like you're having sex up here, which I know can't be true due to the fact that you have a homosexual boyfriend",) work wonders together. I particularly got a ridiculous amount of chuckles out of this sparkly moment, but then there's also the "spell check" line, the talk about homosexuals ("he seemed a little... incredibly gay",) and the car bonnet sequence late in the film. She's a treasure, I tellsya! A treasure!
"Is there an Olive here?"
"There's a whole jar of them in the fridge!"