Easy A

Critics Consensus

It owes a huge debt to older (and better) teen comedies, but Easy A proves a smart, witty showcase for its irresistibly charming star, Emma Stone.

85%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 187

77%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 128,808
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Movie Info

Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter is re-imagined as a contemporary high school comedy in this tale of a scheming student who plots to give her popularity a boost by painting herself the easiest lay in school. Like most high school kids, Olive Penderghast (Emma Stone) just wants to be popular. So much so than when her best friend, Rhiannon (Aly Michalka), asks Olive how her weekend went, the bored teen decides to whip up a spicy white lie just to make things interesting. But that minor exaggeration begins to take on a life of its own when it reaches the ears of motor-mouth gossip Jesus freak Marianne (Amanda Bynes), and in no time the entire student body is abuzz over unassuming Olive's unrepentant weekend of debauchery. Of course not a word of it is true, but that doesn't stop everyone in school from talking, and an amused Olive from deciding to go with the flow. Playing the role of the hussy to the hilt, the girl who used to be invisible begins dressing provocatively and turning heads in the hallways. The students aren't the only ones taking notice, either; Olive's English teacher, Mr. Griffith (Thomas Haden Church), is concerned that the kind of attention she's receiving isn't healthy for a developing girl, and his wife (Lisa Kudrow), the school guidance counselor, is in full agreement. The only people who seem remotely interested in the truth are Olive's trusting and open-minded parents (Stanley Tucci and Patricia Clarkson). As Olive takes note of the parallels between her own situation and the plight of the Scarlet Letter heroine Hester Prynne, she realizes that she may be able to manipulate her newfound notoriety to give fellow classmate Brandon's (Dan Byrd) popularity a much-needed shot in the arm. Olive never thought her little game could possibly have any negative effect on anyone but herself, but when loose lips start sinking ships all around her, she realizes that it's high time for the truth to come out. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

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Cast

Emma Stone
as Olive Penderghast
Penn Badgley
as Woodchuck Todd
Amanda Bynes
as Marianne
Dan Byrd
as Brandon
Thomas Haden Church
as Mr. Griffith
Lisa Kudrow
as Mrs. Griffith
Malcolm McDowell
as Principal Gibbons
Juliette Goglia
as Eighth Grade Olive
Morgan Rusler
as Mr. Abernathy
Nikki Tyler-Flynn
as Mrs. Abernathy
Braeden Lemasters
as Eighth Grade Kid
Blake Hood
as Kennedy Peters-Booth
Stacey Travis
as Marianne's Mom
Bonnie Burroughs
as Micah's Mom
Eddie Applegate
as Micah's Grandfather
Norma Michaels
as Micah's Grandmother
Yolanda Snowball
as Receptionist
Johanna Braddy
as Melody Bostic
David Gore
as Pre-Teen Kid
Lalaine
as Gossipy Girl
Chris De Lorenzo
as Spectator in the Gym
Nancy Karr
as Singing Server
Clay Black
as Singing Server
Brad Etheridge
as Singing Server
Michael Strauss
as Singing Server
Max Crumm
as Pontius
Jessica Jann
as Jezebel
Danni Katz
as Harlot
Jason Kropik
as Mortimer
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News & Interviews for Easy A

Critic Reviews for Easy A

All Critics (187) | Top Critics (39)

  • The script shrewdly boosts its IQ by working in parallels to Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter and piling on 80s teen movie references.

    Oct 21, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Cath Clarke

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Stone gives a terrific performance, her knowing drawl implying intellect and indifference with underlying warmth.

    Oct 20, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Anna Smith

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • As for Emma Stone, she didn't have to win me over. She conquered me from the first A.

    Sep 21, 2010 | Full Review…
  • Easy A belongs in the company of Election, Heathers, and Mean Girls -- all motion pictures that have outlived their theatrical lives because they have unique voices and use them to say something.

    Sep 19, 2010 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Any movie that quotes Mark Twain, excerpts John Hughes and employs a singeing British cussword normally unheard in PG-13 high school comedies - that's all right, too. More than all right. Easy A might not ace it, but it scores a solid B.

    Sep 17, 2010 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • An extremely witty, inventive, sweet and perceptive coming-out party for Emma Stone.

    Sep 17, 2010 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

    Tom Long

    Detroit News
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Easy A

  • Jun 11, 2017
    Pretty far removed from my wheelhouse, but Emma Stone makes for such a great lead, the banter-y dialogue given to the adult roles (most masterfully spoken by Stanley Tucci) is so hilarious, and the story flows so naturally from A to B to C that you can't stop for long enough to question the flaws while you're watching it, that there was no way I couldn't at least give Easy A a passing grade (no pun intended).
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • May 10, 2015
    Funny, bitter-sweet and intelligent, Easy A narrates a plucky girl's struggle with handling a simple spat of dishonesty as it unravels into a fat web of lies and an eventual bad reputation. Emma Stone's breakthrough role and is on par with Mean Girls in its bleakly honest humour and polished zeal. It's also weird and kind of fun to watch Amanda Bynes play an exaggeration of a teenage purity ring wealding bible thumper, oh the irony.
    Harry W Super Reviewer
  • Jul 06, 2013
    I wasn't interested in this at all at first, but decided to watch the first few minutes of it. I'm really glad I did. This was a really funny, touching film that also documents the potential hardships of high school and its eccentricities. I wasn't a fan of Emma Stone before, but after seeing her in this film, she has quickly become one of my favorite actresses. I'm looking forward to seeing her in more films in the future, hopefully playing the role of more protagonists.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer
  • Apr 07, 2013
    [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]
    Directors C Super Reviewer

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