When checking out the latest book-to-movie adaptation, I will, almost 99% of the time, say the book was better. I felt the same way about Moxie, but at the same time, I have to admit that the movie was fun.
The YA book, Moxie, by Jenifer Mathieu, is the story of Vivian, a shy teenager living in a small town in Texas, who just wants to keep her head down and graduate with her best friend, Claudia. East Rockport is one of those towns that lives and breathes football, but Viv is fed up with football culture, where athletic boys can do no wrong, but the girls have to put up with hallway harassment and a sexist dress code. To combat this frustration, Viv takes a page from her mom’s past as a punk rock Riot Grrrl in the ’90s. She creates a feminist ‘zine and anonymously leaves them in the girls’ bathrooms at the high school. Her idea catches fire, and soon Viv is making new friends while making a change. Moxie Girls fight back!
The movie does a great job casting this film. I am a huge fan of Amy Poehler, so I was excited to see her bring not only her direction but her acting skills to this movie to Netflix. She stars as Viv’s mom – the OG Riot Grrrl. Overall, the movie keeps the same message as the book but with some changes. The biggest changes were the location, not set in Texas, no grandparents, a female school principal, and more a diverse cast. You could see the cliques in the school and how the movie wanted to represent all of them.
By the end of the movie, the girls all band together for a common goal, which is really nice, but only after some cliched teen angst. I would have loved to see more of the girls building each up rather than tearing down each other. The music, mostly dominated by Bikini Kill, was a great addition to the movie as well; being able to hear the music that drove the revolt really added to the experience. Overall, the movie was fun and enjoyable, but I loved the book more!