Drive Me Crazy
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Review by Aaron Beierle | posted March 4, 2000
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Graphical Version
The Movie:

When I first heard that Melissa Joan Hart was doing her first feature film, I was pleased. I actually like her show, "Sabrina, The Teenage Witch" quite a bit and find her to be a good actress with a sweet nature. While watching "Drive Me Crazy", I wondered what she could have seen in this film. I wanted to like the movie, but the comedy attempted at doesn't work and the romance between the two main characters falls flat. It's one of those movies where I was checking my watch fairly often to see how much I had left to sit through.

If anything, this film is an example of what the "teen comedy" has been brought down to. Structured around the alternative rock soundtrack and named after the Britney Spears song, the movie seems to have more thought put into the song selection than the plot. The story is nothing out of the ordinary; Hart plays Nicole Maris, one of the more popular girls in her high school. When the school jock she likes goes out with another girl, she becomes desperate to not go to the school dance all by herself. Her new plan: transform her rebel neighbor Chase(Adrian Grenier) into the perfect prom date. The two used to be friends when they were younger, but have gone their separate ways once they reached high school.

The problem I had with this picture is not only did I not believe that the Chase character would change his image so quickly, but I didn't find the two leads believable at all as a couple. Not only did they lack chemistry, but I found it hard to even basically care about them as characters, or what happened to them in the story. With the knowledge that the two main characters are of course going to be together in the end, the film becomes a slow ride to an obvious end. There are other films where we know the two leads are going to get together in the end from the first minute, but they contain charming characters that we want to follow. "Drive Me Crazy" certainly isn't one of those films.

"Drive Me Crazy" has two good performers in the lead roles, but beyond that it doesn't have much else to it, nor does it ever really attempt to do much with what little material it has. There are a few serious moments that actually work decently, but the comedic and romantic aspects of the film definitely lack any spark, which makes for a very long 91 minutes.



The DVD

VIDEO: This is a good but not great anamorphic transfer from Fox - it's just not up to the kind of efforts that Fox has shown they're capable of from past titles. Images are adequately sharp throughout. Although much of the movie is fine looking, there are some parts of the film that seemed noticably too dark and lacking detail. Colors are decent when they make an appearance, but for the most part I didn't find "Drive Me Crazy" to be too bright and colorful-looking a movie.

There are some noticable flaws throughout - aside from the picture occasionally seeming too dark, there are some occasional marks on the print used, as well as some instances of shimmer. Decent, but the flaws subtract too far from the overall quality. I was a little more pleased with the image quality of Fox's other recent effort Best Laid Plans.

SOUND: Not bad in terms of audio. Whether you like the music or not, the alternative rock/dance soundtrack comes on about every other minute. It sounds strong and manages to be nicely enveloping. Other than that, the movie remains mostly dialogue - dialogue sounds usually clear, but there were times when it seemed a little soft.

MENUS::Some slight animated menus that show images from the movie with the score in the background.

EXTRAS: Music videos from Britney Spears(if you're a fan of Spears, you'd be better off looking at her Time Out With Britney Spears DVD) and a video from Jars Of Clay; 4 TV spots and the theatrical trailer. Not a whole lot for your $34.95, although certainly better than the "trailer only" discs Fox used to release.



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