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The In Crowd

"Single White Female" changes her address to "90210" in this trashy thriller.


Poor, pretty, pouty Adrien (Lori Heuring) just got sprung from a mental home into a job at a country club full of rich bitches in bikinis and buff boys bingeing on booze. She's soon given a civics lesson on the politics of popularity by reigning queen of cool Brittany (Susan Ward), a junior Joan Collins, but proves too good a study when she digs up the secrets of the rich and raunchy. This over-the-top sin-ema tart is cream filled with airy flash and flesh. The whole thing looks like an Abercrombie & Fitch catalog splashed on screen (until things turn deadly!). But beware: The plot holes are bigger than the busts and bulging biceps.


Don't expect to see a big showing from this cast on Oscar night. That said, it's a credit to the pumped and primped actors that they could pull off this less-than-inspiring material with any style (or a straight face). Ward is deliciously campy. Her every line is laced with sexual innuendo dripping off her glossed lips like gourmet syrup. Heuring handles the hero-on-the-verge-of-a-nervous-breakdown duties with sufficient grace. Nathan Bexton is a particular standout, bringing charm to his martini-soaked slacker.


The teen-thriller genre is in an odd place. Done (literally) to death in the '80s, deconstructed in "Scream" (and its numerous imitators) until the whole genre was recently wrapped together, and sent up in "Scary Movie." The big question is "what's next?" Instead of answering that question, director Mary Lambert stalls in a holding pattern with this overboiled orgy of eye shadow. Still, it's hard to deny the guilty pleasures here, the kind best seen in an insomniac fit while watching post-late night television.

Bottom Line

Trashy titillation wrapped in a gooey guilty pleasure.


Starring Lori Heuring, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Susan Ward, Matthew Settle and Nathan Bexton.

Directed by Mary Lambert. Produced by James G. Robinson. Screenplay by Mark Gibson and Philip Halprin. Released by Warner Bros.