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Volume 3, Number 3
March, 1998

You Gotta See This SPICEWORLD

by Molly Degnan

 Save your money, Girls, it's a short ride. In fact, don't just save your money, squeeze every last dime out of your loyal fans.
 And get ready, world, the Spice Girls have made a movie.
 Spiceworld, the day-in-the-life-of-the-Spice Girls rockumentary, is an obvious rip-off of the Beatles 1964 "Hard Days Night", the main difference being the Beatles were actually talented. The Spice Girls make a valiant effort to act in this film, which is pretty funny, inasmuch as they couldn't portray the concept of falling if you pushed them off a cliff.
 But they do try, I have to give them credit for that. They work the elusive "Girl Power" concept that is the basis of the Spice Girl phenomenon, without ever really explaining what it is, beyond developing a hopelessly shallow personality that can be summed up in one word (Posh, Scary, etc). And while they do try hard, they also seem detached from it all, enough that they cannot even successfully lip synch their own songs. They have amateur, unfocused speaking voices (especially Ginger Spice, the Wonder Woman lookalike who sounds like Fran Drescher, only worse), which makes one wonder if they actually sing their songs, or are the next Milli Vanilli to hit the scene.
 Spiceworld is a two hour insight into this overnight sensation. It shows a totally fictional glimpse into the personal lives of the Girls; we watch them coo over how cute and funny they are, we see their van (painted like a Union Jack and driven by Meatloaf), their clothes, their drug-smuggler shoes. Attention Spice Girl worshipping teeny-boppers out there: Do NOT try to get through an airport wearing those suckers.
 If there was one redeeming quality of Spiceworld, it is the supporting cast. Even though totally contrived, they still have more depth than the Girls. Roger Moore is hilarious as their psycho manager, and their dance teacher had the 12-year-old in front of me snorting root beer out her nose. The Girls also have the ability to make fun of themselves, so the film was not quite as self-serving as I was expecting.
 But ultimately, this is just an unfortunate attempt at the real world. The screenplay even falls into the last resort of a live childbirth scene, using one of their outside friends. Of course the Girls wouldn't get pregnant; that would involve a relationship, which would require an attention span.
 So Spiceworld is just a silly film about a silly group of girls who, while they clearly have not hit rock-bottom yet, are digging away with their gold-plated shovels.
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