Brittany Wells: "I like this music. Can you buy the soundtrack to pornos?
Kimberly Joyce: Tiffany Minx, Stephanie Swift... You know, Brittany, a lot of these porn stars have names that sound like ours. So if we wanted to, when we grow up, we could be porn stars. You couldn't, Randa. I'm sorry.
Randa: That is quite all right."
The setting is one of California's fanciest and swankiest private schools. Our tour guide is the achingly beautiful and effortlessly cruel Kimberly Joyce. Kim thinks she's a kind-hearted and open-minded little ingenue, yet it only takes a few short minutes before we realize there's a black soul hidden beneath this lovely exterior. Kim is leading a school tour for Randa, a soft-spoken Hindu girl who is new on campus. Along with her adorable-yet-obtuse best friend Brittany, Kim takes Randa under her wing, intent on introducing Randa to what their world is all about: basically she teaches the fine art of sexual manipulation, intolerance and venomous selfishness. After a series of events been left undisclosed here, the trio hatches a detestable scheme to shame one of their least-admired educators. Kim, Britt and Randa file false accusations of sexual abuse against their English teacher.
Mr. Anderson: "Kimberly Joyce, you have the face of an angel. Throw in a ripe, little pubescent body - the devil wears a gray skirt, my friend."
A teenage version of "To Die For" whose flaws are superceded by a complex, compelling turn from Evan Rachel Wood. A high school send-up more incorrect than "Heathers" and considerably less articulate than "Election". "Pretty Persuasion" is too flip to be serious and too smug to be rousing. And by the time we get around to the big reveal, which feels shoe-horned into the ending, the idea that a puppet master like Kimberly would expend her considerable gifts on the most banal of high school dramas feels ludicrous.