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‘Senior Year’ Review: An Overstuffed but Amiable Comedy Trip Back to High School

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variety.com

Dennis Harvey Film CriticSpare parts of high school comedies from “Peggy Sue Got Married” to “Mean Girls” and beyond have been torn asunder, then sewn back together to create “Senior Year.” In other words, this vehicle for producer-star Rebel Wilson isn’t organic even as a genre homage; its Frankensteinian assemblage always feels more imitative than inspired.

Nonetheless, if Alex Hardcastle’s effortfully high-spirited Netflix feature isn’t exactly good, it’s still good enough to provide reasonable throwaway fun, thanks much less to the material than to a cast that elevates it when they can.Introduced as “just some average boring invisible girl who had no friends” in 1999, Australian émigré Stephanie Conway (Angourie Rice) determines on her 14th birthday to start doing better.

Three years hence, a methodical push toward popularity has paid off: She’s captain of the cheerleading squad, has assumed possession of deadly rival Tiffany’s (Ana Yi Puig) boyfriend Blaine (Tyler Barnhardt), seems to have the Prom Queen crown sewed up, and can afford not to even notice that both her BFFs (Molly Brown’s Martha, Zaire Adams’ Seth) are crushing on her.

Alas, an acrobatic not-quite-accident orchestrated by the aforementioned rival at a pep rally ends all this social perfection with a splat.

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