Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2011

Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995)

Dawn Wiener, as might be apparent from her name, has a hard time in junior high. Her locker is regularly defaced, the popular cheerleaders taunt her about her sexuality, wondering aloud if she is a lesbian, and she has a particularly traumatizing incident in the school bathroom when a menacing girl orders her to stay away from Brandon. Brandon, another bully, has shown his interest in her by threatening to sexually assault her.

Home life isn't much better: her father and brother are preoccupied with their own pursuits, while her mother dotes on her charming, adorable younger sister. Everyone is so comically nasty and Wiener, so reactive and pathologically earnest, the ultimate message is one of unity: We all feel like a Dawn Wiener sometimes.