By Jason Harris | Film | April 22, 2014 |
By Jason Harris | Film | April 22, 2014 |
A Lifetime movie can be objectively terrible.
One can make the argument that a good Lifetime movie should be objectively terrible. But what a Lifetime movie can’t be is boring. And here we arrive at today’s subject: Restless Virgins.
Now, you’d think that a movie such an overcooked title would have to be some overwritten gothic monstrosity that ends when Darius Beauregard, Miranda’s cruel but beautiful lover, swears eternal revenge on the Duchamp family. If he can’t have her, then by GOD he will have her daddy’s company.
Instead, Restless Virgins starts … Well, that’s the wrong word. Almost nothing in the first 1:15 matters at all.
The movie is set at Sutton Academy, the kind of elite New England prep school that produces the people who will go on to wreck the economy and the environment while embezzling money to buy new boobs for their 14-year-old daughters.
Emily is the ostensible star of the story; a neutered Daria who likes pointing out that she’s too smart for all this high school nonsense. She’s apparently not smart enough to get into the Ivy League and so serves as the editor of the school newspaper. The paper is evidently staffed solely by her nerdy Indian sidekicks who barely matter except as a sop to diversity. She’s also a VIIIRGIN. Does that play a role in the plot? No, it does not.
Our antagonist is Dillon, aka Teen Hitler. He’s the son of a billionaire senator, good-looking, a star lacrosse player, intelligent, amoral, entirely debauched (in a clean-cut Lifetime movie kind of way) and the only compelling character in the whole damn film. Really, I just wanted to follow his adventures as he casually corrupted everyone in his path.
Finally, there’s Lucas, the new kid from Nebraska. He’s also a LAX bro and presumably on scholarship as his money woes factor into the “plot.” Lucas is also a VIIIRGIN. Does that play a role in the plot? No, it does not.
Lucas and Emily have a mutual admiration thing going on, but he’s part of the in-crowd while she’s gross and weird in the way that movies make young, attractive girls gross and weird, with her flawless skin and shiny black hair. She doesn’t even wear glasses. You’re not trying at all, Restless Virgins, and I am sick of your shit.
There’s also a black kid who doesn’t have a name or any lines, but the brother got a few weeks of work so I ain’t mad.
Also? Those preceding seven paragraphs? IT TOOK 75 GODDAMMNED MINUTES TO GET THAT ON SCREEN.
Finally, we’re ready to start the story. All of our characters our seniors and working on their “hand-offs,” a school tradition wherein seniors pass along a memento to underclassman. Teen Hitler figures a sex tape (ripped from the headlines of 2004!) of the senior lacrosse players in a locker room orgy will make them legends forever.
“Years from now, people at this school will know I was the man,” says Teen Hitler, because he’s a budding supervillain.
The players will wear their jerseys for identification purposes, but faces and numbers will be blurred out, which sort of ruins the entire “legendary” angle, but no reason to insist on logic now.
In the meantime (deep sigh), Lucas and Emily have bonded over a class project and he takes her on a date to a fair. He doesn’t win a stuffed bear for her, but they do share an umbrella in the rain, so that’s a win and a loss on the cliché front. Just when it looks like they’ll be boarding the D train to Pound Town, Lucas gets a text. The orgy is on for tonight!
Lucas is supposed to be a good guy and he was visibly uncomfortable when Teen Hitler was scouting locations like some sort of demented Dino DeLaurentis. But he comes up with the idea to get his roommate’s night-vision camera after the locker room proves too dark to film, plays Emily off in front of his friends and abandons her at the fair. Lucas is kind of an asshole. Teen Hitler is an asshole too, but at least the movie doesn’t make him out to be a hero.
The orgy, well, gangbang since they only recruited one girl, is made and burned to a DVR, and Teen Hitler hands the disk off to a younger bro IN FRONT OF THE ENTIRE STUDENT BODY. Will the movie get out? OF COURSE IT WILL.
Lucas never made it to the skeet party because his car breaks down, but as Emily points out later, he only foiled by the shoddy workplace practices of Kia employees. Our hero, folks!
To make a long story short (too late), Emily gets a copy of the movie. Angry at Lucas and sick of the way sex is used as social capital at the school (do we ever see sex used as social capital? NO, WE DO NOT), she posts the video on the newspaper’s website.
And then she’s utterly shocked when administrators threaten her with expulsion for, you know, posting possible child pornography on school servers. Maybe shoulda run that one by the advisor, Em. This is why you’re not Ivy League material.
Teen Hitler can’t afford a scandal that might derail his father’s re-election campaign, so he starts buying off the participants, including Lucas and Emily.
Lucas has been accepted to Yale (suck it, Harvard) but doesn’t have the $60,000 tuition. So, in exchange for that sweet Daddy Hitler cash, Lucas agrees to say he was the star of Lax Bro Lust and that Teen Hitler was off perfecting his army of death robots or something.
Now, this tuition thing is a big deal. It’s the whole reason Lucas is even thinking about selling out. Going back to a desolate hellhole like Nebraska seems preferable to a reputation as a sex offender, but he’s really in a pickle. This shit is deep, y’all.
Here’s the problem with his dilemma:
We believe that a Yale education should not be limited to only those who can afford the full cost of attendance. By committing to an admissions policy that does not consider a student’s ability to pay, and by meeting the full financial need of all admitted students (with no loans required), we ensure that Yale is accessible to the most talented students from around the world, regardless of their family’s income.
THE CENTRAL CONFLICT OF LUCAS’S ENTIRE STORY ARC IS WRONG. HE’S ALREADY GOING TO YALE (suck it, Harvard) ASSUMING HE DOESN’T GET CAUGHT UP IN AN UGLY SCANDAL LIKE RUNNING A TRAIN ON A TEENAGE GIRL.
At the inevitable disciplinary hearing, Lucas turns on Teen Hitler in what is played as an act of courage even though wouldn’t have had to sell-out in the first place if he could read. Emily saves his fool ass by playing a recording of an earlier confrontation where Dillion admitted to his crime, you know, like a supervillain would do.
Later, she and Lucas bone and who gives a shit?
I’m going to be reviewing Lifetime movies because Dustin is an eccentric millionaire and, frankly, I’ve got nothing better to do. But I sure hope I’ve got more to tell you next time because, feh. Lifetime managed to make a limp, lifeless movie that centers around a teenage bukkake party (Hi, Googlers!) which, I guess, is something of a cinematic triumph.
Jason Harris is adamant that A Woman Scorned and Casualties of Love: The Long Island Lolita Story are the greatest Lifetime movies ever made. Come talkin’ that Mother, May I Sleep With Danger mess will get you slapped.