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DVD Review: Whip It

January 26, 2010

Whip It – A Fox Searchlight Release

Release Date: October 2nd, 2009

DVD Release Date: January 26th, 2010

Rated PG for language, not recommended for young children

Running time: 111 minutes


Drew Barrymore (dir.)

Shauna Cross (writer)

Shauna Cross (novel – Derby Girl)


The Section Quartet (music)


Ellen Page as Bliss Cavendar

Marcia Gay Harden as Brooke Cavendar

Jimmy Fallon as ‘Hot Tub’ Johnny Rocket

Kristen Wiig as Maggie Mayhem

Drew Barrymore as Smashley Simpson


Our reviews below:


Whip It DVD Review By John C.

**1/2 (out of 4)

Whip It is an alright sports comedy from first time director Drew Barrymore, and starring Juno’s Ellen Page. The story follows a curved path, predictable at every smooth turn and never getting anywhere unique or special.  This film doesn’t understand teenagers as much as it understands a certain type of teenager. And it knows it’s audience very well. If it weren’t for the big names, it would have been tailor made for DVD. This is a Fox Searchlight film that didn’t need their saving, and would have fit in the bargain bin just fine.


I didn’t care for any of the characters and the film has more than enough mean spirited moments. There’s even a contrived romance that’s just thrown in for some added teen girl appeal. Whip It is worth checking out, I was mildly entertained, but I also can’t say that I really liked it. It’s by no means a bad movie, it’s just not that great. The high end of average is still average.


The DVD includes about 16-minutes of deleted scenes, including an alternate opening. The Blu-Ray also includes an interview with writer Shauna Cross, and a digital copy.


Whip It DVD Review By Erin V.

**1/2 (out of 4)

Whip It is about a 17 year old girl, Bliss Cavender (Ellen Page), who is tired of just doing the beauty pageants that mean so much to her mother, but little to her. When she attends a roller derby event, she ends up putting her name down for tryouts, (faking her age in order to be eligible), and getting selected to play as part of the team.


I guess the film is about ‘girl power’, and the fact that even something like roller derby’s can be really rough and tough sports – which judging by this film, they are. Unfortunately, I found some of the film to be not all that interesting to me, and I never really felt for any of the characters – the connections between them on screen just didn’t seem to transfer to the audience. There were also a few scenes that kind of bugged me. I never saw the point of a food fight for example, and find it kind of a waste of time to watch one – but maybe that’s just me.


While the potential may have been there, this one just didn’t quite cut it for me to be anything more than worth a rental. It was entertaining enough while I watched it – but not one to watch again and again. ___________________________________________________________________________

Whip It DVD Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

Whip It is an entertaining film about the rough and tumble sport of roller skate derby. Bliss, played by Canadian actress Ellen Page, is a rebellious teenager, whose mother has groomed for beauty pageants. Bliss, in an act of defiance, decides to sneak off with her best friend to join a roller derby team. Bliss, without her parents knowledge, becomes “Babe Ruthless”, an extremely fast skater on the track. But what will Bliss do when one of the matches interferes with a beauty pageant?


Whip It should appeal to teenage girls who want to see more of a tomboy character. This one is worth owning or renting, if only to see Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut.


Whip It DVD Review By Maureen

**1/2 (out of 4)

Fans of Drew Barrymore, Ellen Page, and roller derby will be entertained by this high energy tale of beauty pageant winner turned roller derby poster girl.  When Bliss Cavender (Ellen Page) gets tired of being pushed by her mother to enter beauty pageants she rebels by trying out for a local roller derby team, The Hurl Scouts. It turns out Bliss is a really fast skater and really good scoring points with the “whip it” move.


While skating with The Hurl Scouts, Bliss/Babe Ruthless manages to hold her own and bond with the other tough girl skaters such as Smashley Simpson (Drew Barrymore).  Whip It is very much a story about teenage rebellion, female bonding and of course, roller derby.


While the acting is good all around, the story is rather predictable and if you like watching roller derby, entertaining enough. What it seemed to lack was character development. I found it hard to care one way or another for any of the characters.  Still, Whip It is worth at least a rental to check out Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut and Ellen Page’s acting.


Whip It DVD Review By Tony

**1/2 (out of 4)

Whip It tells a predictable story about a small town Texas girl (Ellen Page), groomed by her former beauty queen mother (Martia Gay Harden) to follow in her footsteps, who finds her true calling with a local roller blading team, which her parents eventually come to accept.


I was able to enjoy The Wrestler, The Blind Side, and Invictus though I would never sit through a match in any of the sports depicted, Though not in the same league as any of those films, Whip It had a good enough cast and just enough roller blading footage to keep my interest in a sport that I may never watch again, with characters that I wouldn’t really want to know.


Consensus: Whip It is an alright sports comedy from first time director Drew Barrymore. Though a fine effort, the film just ends up feeling average, and none of the characters are that likable. **1/2 (Out of 4)

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