Go see Whip It with your girlfriends or your sister, because this is the girl power film of the year. Badass, scantily-clad girls? Check. Sexy contact sport? Check. Ellen Page? Oh you betcha that’s a check.
Page plays Bliss, who is stuck in a rut, working at a lame restaurant in a small Texas town and doing beauty pageants to make her mom happy. Then, she attends her first roller derby in Austin. Way impressed, she tells one of the roller girls that she’s her new hero, and the girl shoots back, “be your own hero,” and invites Bliss to tryouts for the team. Bliss steps up to the challenge, and after joining the team she is born again hard.
Roller derby is a seriously hard sport, where hot tattooed chicks knock down other hot tattooed chicks as the crowd roars. Every girl chooses a skate alterego: there’s Smashley Simpson (Drew Barrymore), Rosa Sparks (Eve), Malice in Wonderland (Kristen Wiig, hilarious as always) and Iron Maven (Juliette Lewis). Thus Bliss becomes BABE RUTHLESS.
It’s a great film for girls, but it’s not a chick flick: Whip It is all about hard-as-fuck women, and the love interest plot line is delightfully unclichéd. The focus is not on scoring men, who cheat and give you crabs, and more about challenging yourself, and finding some solid girlfriends. Bonus if they look good in a mini-skirt and rollerskates.