003777Reviews & Counting
DVD disk
10.08.2004 By: The Shootin Surgeon
Crossroads order
Tamra Davis

Britney Spears
Anson Mount
Taryn Manning


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Three friends hitch a ride from Georgia to the West Coast with a stranger after they get sick of life in their small town. Along the way, they rediscover their friendship and become closer than ever while confronting every possible issue a young girl can face. Oh and by the way, once of these girls happens to be Britney Spears.
Before I start with the movie itself, let me just talk a bit about what people really want to know about. I hadn’t seen the film at the theaters and by all accounts, Britney was supposed to redefine bad acting...but you know what? I think a lot of people owe this girl an apology. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t foresee her making a thank you speech to the Academy anytime soon but heck, I’ve seen a whole lot worse by some supposed "professional” actresses in the past so rest easy Britney, this guy right here thinks you were all right. Now, we have to find a way for you to thank me… I’ll take care of that.

The film itself is formulaic at best. The plot involving the three girlfriends who were inseparable in their childhood and who drifted apart only to become closer that ever after a series of defining moments doesn’t exactly stink of originality and neither does anything else about the movie. Along the way, they also face all sorts of issues that seem to be thrown in there just to give every person in the world some relationship with the film but it all happens to the point where it become unrealistic. Teenage pregnancy, rape, cheating fiancés, confronting virginity, overprotective parents, bad breakups, kids mocking each others, dreams of being a big star, meeting your estranged mom for the first time and more! How all this happens to only three girls is beyond me! I was surprised they were still alive by the end of the show. Oh and I forgot to mention that the guy they hitch the ride with is a suspected killer.

Overall though, the film wasn’t exactly a disaster but it was no stunner either, but frankly speaking it’s pretty obvious I wasn’t really part of the target market for this. So if you’re a 13-year old girl or a dirty old man such as me...then check it out. The little girls will enjoy watching Britney all over the screen (make no mistake, this is a pure Britney vehicle) and the dirty old man (such as yours truly) will enjoy the few shots of Britney in her underwear (they were actually quite excellent
Like I said above, this is a pure Britney vehicle and the extras are no different. To begin with, we have a set of 3 featurettes. The first one is a 25-minute ditty entitled “The Making of Crossroads: 40 days with Britney”. It’s your basic “making of” type featurette with cast & crew interviews except instead of discussing the actual making of the film, it all centers around Britney’s involvement and sine you do get some extra cleavage shots, it’s all right with me. One odd thing is that every one involved with this film is a woman from the producer, to the writer to the director and that they all have that “alternative lifestyle look to them. We also get an appearance by Britney’s way overexposed mom Lynne.

The second featurette is a 10-minute long laugher called “Taryn’s T-shirts”. Hosted by Taryn Manning and some other girl, this is a tutorial on how to make the t-shirts the girls wear during one of the film’s scenes. I knew what I was in for when a “sharp tools” warning flashed on the screen prior to the beginning (never mind that I’ve sharpened my own tool watching Britney several times before). Basically this is a crafts segment showing you how to cut and decorate t-shirts so that you too can look like a teenage whore when you’re done. The funny thing is that it’s shot in wacky “fast motion” so you can’t actually see what they’re doing but you do get the explanations. I wanted to do one for myself but my girlfriend said I shouldn’t on account of my hairy back.

Last is “First in line: Inside the Crossroads Premiere”, a walkthrough of the premiere hosted by Zoë Saldana. Clocking in at about 7 minutes, it consists of a handheld camera following the charismatic Saldana around before and after the premiere. Again though, the highlight consists of Britney showing up in yet another way too small outfit. Them Louisiana girls shore is classy!

Next up you’ll get to watch six deleted scenes presented by director Tamra Davis. The scenes themselves are average at best except for on of them. Fortunately for all of us, it’s the Britney-small lace panties scene and it also features a very funny Justin Long. I won’t ruin it but suffice it to say he offers Britney some money in exchange for sex, which I’ve been doing for a few years through her fan club to no avail.

Following this little stop, you can treat yourself to the feature-length commentary, hosted by producer Ann Carli, writer Shonda Rhimes and director Tamra Davis. The commentary is pretty constant throughout the film and the ladies don’t leave any long blank spots but I couldn’t help but be reminded of giggly schoolgirls working on their homework. I attribute that to my sexist yet correct opinion that women are best suited for the kitchen. (Please don’t e-mail me, I’m beyond help and I was only kidding).

A cool feature called “Breakthrough Britney” is next in the batting order. It consists of the film itself but once in a while, you get a pop-up of Brit sharing a cute anecdote about the film with you. It’s pretty cool to watch for a little while although you do get tired of it after a while. I have nothing but respect for the girl but she doesn’t really go out on a limb on any of these comments and I suspect her publicist was standing next to her the whole time ready to buzz any comment that could have been less than positive. I was hoping I’d hear her call someone a raving bitch but it didn’t happen.

The next three features all relate to Britney’s music videos. The first is a straight-up presentation of two videos: “Overprotected” and “I’m not a Girl”. I’d be a huge liar if I said I hadn’t been humming the very catchy “Overprotected” all day. You can then sing along with Britney over the same videos in this feature that displays the lyrics at the bottom of the screen. I now know two entire Britney songs. I can woo any 14-year old in town. Yes! The last video-related feature is “Edit your own video”. This one was pretty disappointing. You pretty much just get to re-arrange three different scenes in a video and watch them play. Not impressed.

A photo gallery follows, along with 2 trailers and 4 TV spots from MTV.
Well, this film is pretty much what you expect it to be. If you don't like Britney Spears, you're better off ignoring this than watching it and then whining about it but if you think she deserves a chance then she doesn't really disappoint. She is what she is. The movie on the other hand does take itself a bit too seriously and therefore will turn off many casual viewers so it unfortunately becomes a `fans only affair.
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