Given Lindsay Lohan’s current status as constant tabloid staple and occasional visitor to police blotters, it’s hard to believe it was only a few short years ago; she was being projected as Hollywood’s “next big thing.” She had made an impression on critics in 1998 at the age of twelve, when she stared in the dual role of twins in the remake of The Parent Trap. In 2003, she had a major success when she starred opposite Jamie Lee Curtis in a remake of Freaky Friday which grossed $160 million worldwide. In 2004, Lohan starred in Mean Girls, which proved to be her breakout role and remains one of her best films to date.

Mean GirlsBased on the book Queen Bees and Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman, Mean Girls was directed by Nark Waters (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Freaky Friday) from a screenplay by former Saturday Night Live head writer Tina Fey, who also has a part in the film. Cady Heron (Lindsay Lohan) has spent most of her life in the African Bush, being homeschooled by her zoologist parents (Ana Gasteyer and Neil Flynn). When her parents move to Illinois so her mother can take a job, it is decided that Cady will attend public school for the first time.
Cady is completely unprepared for her first day at North Shore High School. Virtually no one pays attention to her and she feels like a total outcast. She is finally befriended by two of the school’s biggest outcasts, Janis (Lizzy Caplan), a wannabe goth and alleged lesbian, and Damian (Daniel Franzese), Janis’ flaming gay best friend. Janis and Damian teach Cady about the school’s various cliques, including the Plastics, an exclusive group of girls led by queen bee Regina George (Rachel McAdams), who was once Janis’ best friend. When Regina invites Cady to sit with her and the other two Plastics, gossipy Gretchen Weiners (Lacey Chabert) and dimwitted Karen Smith (Amanda Seyfried), at lunch, Janis and Damien see an opportunity to get even and convince Cady to infiltrate the Plastics so she can spy on them. The Plastics are rich, snobbish girls with non-existent IQ’s. While Janice convinces Cady to spy on the Plastics, the Plastics are intrigued by this new girl from Africa and see her as their own personal project and set out to give her a makeover.
Once Cady is firmly a Plastics insider, she makes the big mistake of falling for fellow classmate Aaron Samuels (Jonathan Bennett), who happens to be the ex-boyfriend of Regina’s. Since going out with a former boyfriend of another Plastic is a mortal sin, a jealous and vindictive Regina has a plan. Even though Regina offers to act as a go-between to get Aaron and Cady together, her real intention is to win Aaron back. Once Cady realizes she’s been double crossed, she puts her own plan in motion to get back at the “queen bee.” Cady starts sabotaging the Plastics from within with a series of mean spirited pranks (she convinces weight-obsessed Regina that a special health bar will help her lose weight, when in reality it’s used by athletes to gain weight), and by dividing and conquering when she gets the girls to turn on each other. However, in the process of destroying the Plastics, Cady has become the popular, stuck up, and self righteous girl she vowed she never wanted to be.

Mean Girls
has a realistic feel to it. Though it’s been quite a few year since I’ve been in high school, the events that happen in this film aren’t too far off from what often happens in the real world. Tina Fey wrote a screenplay with enough smart and witty dialogue to keep thing humorous but realistic; director Mark Waters crafted scenes between the girls that are both funny and an accurate representation of high school life. Many of the scenes in Mean Girls revolve around being popular and truth be told, the utmost desire of high school kids is to fit in.
Unfortunately, near the end, Mean Girls derails and does in fact gets a bit like those typical teenage comedies with the inevitable moral. If you ignore that minor flaw, Mean Girls is definitely a movie a lot of black comedy lovers will enjoy.
Mean Girls arrives on Blu-ray with a solid looking 1080p, 1.78:1-framed transfer. Visible levels of detail are adequate; whether in the high-dollar clothes worn by the girls, facial details and textures, or the many objects scattered about classrooms, cafeterias, mall boutiques, or bedrooms, viewers will find plenty of information to absorb. The transfer sees some heavy noise over the open, but is otherwise mostly clear and pleasant. Flesh tones are slightly reddish in appearance and blacks are stable and dark. Mean Girls is another one of those transfers that looks just fine in high definition but won’t overly impress those that have seen dozens of other Blu-ray titles.
Mean Girls’ Dolby TrueHD 5.1 lossless soundtrack is a front-heavy and completely generic mix. The film is primarily dialogue-driven and features only the occasional burst of sound, generally coming from the film’s pop-rock soundtrack. The music is clear and loud, flowing from the front channels with the support of the subwoofer on several occasions. A party sequence in chapter twelve is about as active and immersive as this one gets, with the soundstage filled nicely with the loud music. Dialogue reproduction is uniformly strong. Mean Girls reproduces all it has to offer with satisfactory results.
Paramount ports over all of the DVD extras on Mean Girls to the Blu-ray. Nothing new here for fans, but it’s good stuff nonetheless. All video is 480i/MPEG-2 only.
Audio Commentary – Director Mark Waters, screenwriter/star Tiny Fey, and producer Lorne Michaels all try to be heard on this group chat. It’s non-stop and all-over-the-place. Most are stories of set shenanigans and casting notes.
Featurette: “Only the Strong Survive” (SD, 25 minutes) – This is the main making-of featurette, and it’s a bit better than the usual PR you usually get with these things. Cast and crew, including Waters, Fey, Lindsay Lohan, most of the teen girl cast and author Wiseman, talk about tackling the adaptation of a book that was somewhat formless. There is also much on the casting, with just about every major character touched upon..
Featurette: “The Politics of Girl World” (SD, 12 minutes) – Wiseman talks rather seriously about the social issues that fueled her book, and if Mean Girls is certainly a comedy, the acidic teen trials and tribulations at its core are no laughing matter.
Featurette: “Plastic Fashion” (SD, 10 minutes) – The last featurette is the most lightweight, taking a peek at the costumes of the main mean girls.
Deleted Scenes (SD, 7 minutes) – There’s nine scenes here. Optional commentary is provided by Waters and Fey on all the scenes.
Gag Reel (SD, 6 minutes) – This one is dubbed “Word Vomit,” and it’s pretty funny, if all the flubs and missed lines get a bit repetitious after six minutes.
Theatrical Trailer (HD) – Wrapping it up is the film’s theatrical trailer, which is the only extra in HD video.