According to Greta Nancy Bardawil

According to Greta Nancy Bardawil
Much like other child actors struggling to fit into an adult world as they age — such as Dakota Fanning snorting cocaine and making out with Kristen Stewart in The Runaways, or Madeline Zima bouncing around topless on David Duchovny — Hilary Duff has been dipping further into transgressive waters as of late. After sticking a scorpion down her pants in War, Inc. and socializing with seeming deviants in What Goes Up, Duff stars here as a suicidal young woman named Greta that gets shipped off to her grandparents after pissing off her mother one too many times. On the surface, a female coming-of-age tale about self-absorption and the lesson of learned compassion featuring the likes of Ellen Burstyn and Melissa Leo sounds like it might be passable fare. The problem is that the script gives Greta the sort of teen speak one would expect from a clueless 50-year-old man, which is only exacerbated by the fact that Duff spouts it like Lizzie McGuire playing emo in a school play. Within the story, there are some gems of wisdom, such as Greta's usage of Julie (Evan Ross), a local biracial cook, to alienate her conservative grandmother, and his subsequent realization of said exploitation. But mostly these are masked under corny dialogue, inconsistent direction and a couple of misguided performances. Perhaps if music video director Nancy Bardawil demonstrated a consistent vision and tone these shortcomings wouldn't have stood out so blatantly. Included with the DVD is an extended "Behind the Scenes," where we discover that the script was written 17 years ago and how overjoyed everyone was with the inclusion of Hilary Duff. Perhaps the most entertaining moment of this supplement comes when Ellen Burstyn makes an amusing observation about the script and how certain characters were written. Also included is a flimsy alternate ending and over seven minutes of deleted/alternate scenes, which offer more joyous teen angst. (Anchor Bay)