Michelle Trachetenberg is a gifted science student, and her mother (Joan Cusack), a committed feminist, is pushing her to forge her way through college. But her Trachtenberg’s true love is figure skating, and she manages to combine the two in a physics project, which opens the door to more skating for her. What to do when she turns out to be really good at skating? That or more academic pursuits? Her opposite number is Hayden Panettiere, the stuck-up blonde whose mother (Kim Cattrall) is a f…gure skating coach and is pushing her daughter as hard as Cusack is pushing hers. How will it all turn out?
Pretty much exactly as you’d expect, of course. This is toothless, predictable family entertainment, on the surface completely inoffensive. And yet, Cusack’s rather strident character is very close to unfortunate caricature. And what about the movie’s tagline: “From Scholastic… To Fantastic!” How’s that for an unfortunate message?
The 5.1 audio is workmanlike. It is perfectly clear, there is zero distortion, and the surround elements aren’t bad. There is a sense of environment (the usual twittering birds and the like), though it is far from intrusive. The music, however, is rather weak in terms of volume. Not a lot of oomph here.
There’s a little bit of grain under the opening credits, but it vanishes afterwards. The colours are very strong and bright – very much in keeping with the tone of the film. The image is sharp, the blacks are good, and there is no visible edge enhancement.
The commentary is by cast members Trachtenberg, Pannettiere, Kirsten Olson and Tervor Blumas. Good luck keeping the voices straight. It’s a bit of a giggle fest as they recount their experiences during the filming. There are five deleted scenes, two videos (“Reach” by Caleigh Peters and “No One” by Aly and A.J.), and the usual clutch of trailers. The menu’s main screen is animated and scored, and the secondary screens are scored.
No, the title does not mean this is a drama about a Hitchcock blonde. More’s the pity.
Special Features List
- Audio Commentary
- Deleted Scenes
- 2 Music Videos