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Legally Blonde

Director:Robert Luketic
Writers:Karen McCullah Lutz and Kirsten Smith
MGM; PG-13; 95 minutes
Release:7/01
Cast:Reese Witherspoon, Luke Wilson, Selma Blair

Legally Blonde's protagonist is a rich and frivolous California sorority girl who gets into Harvard Law by sending a videotape of herself, poolside, lounging in a bikini. It is a comedy, of course. Reese Witherspoon's more real than her character, Elle, who enrolls in a top-notch law school to win back her marriage-prospect boyfriend. Emmett (Luke Wilson) is a sincere young lawyer awed by Elle's sharp mind and shampooed tresses. Plus he's far nicer than her social climber ex-beau (now dating a brunette). Between Elle's West Coast sorority sisters and her Boston blue-blooded profs, the laughs come reluctantly if at all. A murder trial involving Elle demonstrates the movie's off-balance feel for narrative weight.

Legally Blonde constitutes a lumpy amalgam of Witherspoon's Election and Clueless. “Spoiled wealthy girls are people too” seems to be the underlying message of this wayward romantic comedy.