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Comedy Movies - Prozac Nation

BUY Prozac Nation (dvd cover)
Christina Ricci, Jason Biggs, Anne Heche, Jessica Lange
Directed by Erik Skjoldbjaerg
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment 2005
95 minutes

Tolstoy wrote, "Every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." If he weren't a dead white guy, he would probably update that to "Every unhappy young adult is unhappy in her own way." This is basically what Prozac Nation with uberbabe Christina Ricci is about. Aside from a perfectly gratuitous nude scene -nothing wrong with that in this case, Prozac Nation is another movie about an unhappy teen unhappy in her own, banal and incredibly self-centered way.

Prozac Nation is as self-conscious as Lizzie Wurtzel is. Wurtzel is a screwed-up kid from divorced parents who gets a journalism scholarship at Harvard. Things go well for a while and she gets a Rolling Stone journalism award for an article on Lou Reed (who has a cameo) and assignments from the paper that used to matter. She basically has a meltdown while writing about Bruce Springsteen, consults a shrink (Anne Heche), is pissy with all her friends, meets a nice guy, and feels depressed a lot.

This is a well-made, at times well-written, sometimes well-acted movie that somehow does not equal the sum of its uneven parts. Perhaps it is because there is something too designed about Prozac Nation. When a viewer gets to notice how the color of the walls in Lizzie's room was used as the palette for her bedspread, sheets, the t-shirt and underwear she wears to bed, and even the sweater her visiting mother is wearing, you know something is wrong. When you notice cute artsy-fartsy shots and question how implausible the way a particular scene was filmed (for example when the Christina Ricci character stand in the middle of the room while her father (Canadian Nicholas Campbell of Da Vinci) and the camera walk circles around her) this might mean you are looking for something to care about in the movie.

The main reason Prozac Nation doesn't really work is you eventually figure out Lizzie Wurtzel is a self-centered little bitch who believes whatever pains her is the only real pain in the world. When she discovers Rafe (Jason Biggs), her boyfriend, has a severely handicapped sister she accuses him of loving the great Lizzie only because he likes that kind of thing. It comes to a point where you want to slap the TV screen and scream "Get over yourself, dear!" Compared to the Lizzie Wurtzel character in this movie, Barbra Streisand has no ego problems at all.

Prozac Nation is a cool title for a movie that should have been called Oh, Woe Is Poor Little Misunderstood Unloved Self-Centered The World Revolves Around Me. To be fair, the first ten and last ten of the movie show Prozac Nation could have been a decent movie



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