The Runaways Review

7 Apr

In your face. That’s how I want to start this review, because that’s exactly how this movie is. Extreme close ups, drugs, sex, revealing clothes, lesbians, rock n roll, and more drugs. That is what The Runaways is all about – true to it’s original story.

The Runaways is a musical bio-pic about the ensemble that gave Joan Jett, Lita Ford and Cherie Currie their start. Kristen Stewart plays the out of control butch Joan Jett and Dakota Fanning plays the confused 15 year old Cherie Currie. Their friendship would give rise to the female rock group and pave the way for hundreds of female bands and lead singers to follow in their footsteps.

Now to review the characters quickly. First – Dakota Fanning has grown up. Forget everything else you have ever seen her in, forget that she used to be the cute little girl – this is the role that will set her apart from everything before and change her acting career forever. Don’t believe me? In one scene Fanning is seen crunching pills beneath her heels and then snorting them off the floor of her dressing room. Again – in your face. Stewart (Joan Jett) is also good – however, I still don’t think she has real acting talent. Although she was a lead character in the film, I never felt she shined or attracted the viewer’s eye. Instead she was, well, like Kristen Stewart is – awkward and quiet (but she does stop the lip-biting). I do not however question the casting, because I think both Fanning and Stewart were perfect for the roles. There was one character who outshines everyone though, and that was Kim Fowley, the record producer who discovered them and got them to stardom. Played by Michael Shannon, he steals the camera every scene he is in. Proclaiming such quotes as: “You dogs need to get dirty. This isn’t about women’s lib. It’s about women’s libido.It’s his presence that brings out the best in Fanning and Stewart.

Keep Reading After the Jump!

The movie is not the behind the scenes extensive look into the band and all five members, but instead a look at the band, the time they lived in, and filmed with a grittiness of “female power.” The story flows well, starting with two separate stories of Joan Jett and Cherie Curry that become intertwined. The film’s first half I would say was great – uptempto, exciting, and new, however as the film progresses we get trapped into the music bio-pic stereotypes (drugs breaking up a band). That is why I would say this movie isn’t great – but it was good. It is a well-acted and vivid re-creation of a dark, downbeat era when girls weren’t supposed to play electric guitar and you had to be someone pretty tough and pretty special to try it.

Kibitzer’s Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Be sure to check back as The Kibitzers go to the movies tonight to see the highly anticipated film Kick-Ass.


2 Responses to “The Runaways Review”

  1. jade45 August 12, 2010 at 2:00 am #

    Great review! I agree with you on a lot of your points. especially about Kristen and her awkwardness…:) Check mine out @

  2. Storage Chest December 2, 2010 at 7:11 pm #

    the most memorable movie quote that i could think of is the one on Forest Gump ‘;;

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