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So Undercover


‘…not as awful as its straight-to-landfill release in the States might suggest and Cyrus has star quality, admittedly not well applied here…’

Say it loud, yes, Miley Cyrus is Hannah Montana is Molly Morris is Brooke Stanbrooke is so undercover in So Undercover! Yup, while Miley Cyrus is topping our charts with her melodic banger Flowers, it’s probably worth taking a look back at an earlier and rather less successful attempt to reinvent the former teen star. Cyrus has her burnished, post-party girl image down pat these days, but back in 2011, no-one seemed that interested, meaning that the film sat on the shelf for two years and was released in only 13 countries.

So Undercover positions the teen behind the phenomenon of Hannah Montana as a small-time Dallas private eye in the Nancy Drew mould but like totes independent. Of course, Molly Morris has dad issues, and when she’s hired by a man purporting to be from the FBI (Jeremy Piven), she also has undercover issues, because he asks her to enrol as Brooke Stonebridge at a Yale freshman house.

With Kelly Osbourne across the room as her flatmate, Molly is embroiled in a plot involving, drumroll please, some stolen accounting ledgers. It’s hard to imagine fans of the star or the genre getting excited by a rote McGuffin like stolen accounting ledgers, and it’s kind of obvious from the generic quantity of the result that everyone is on a trial run for something else.

That said, So Undercover is not as awful as its straight-to-landfill release in the States might suggest and Cyrus has star quality, admittedly not well applied here. While the poster promises some Mean Girls snark, it’s actually a very simple time-passer for teens, and the vanilla result gives little suggestion of the super-confident adult star that Cyrus has become by 2023.


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    • Wut? Olivier would have killed to front a David Guetta banger! If you want to be a serious critic, you have to know the classics, and So Undercover is such a text. I felt the film making and remaking itself as I watched it. Get thee to a library!

        • The first folio given some insight into the creation of Miley’s character. You don’t see Olivier dancing around a swimming pool in a high cut cocktail dress. Didn’t have the imagination or the technology, so he just made stuffy old plays that nobody wanted to see. Insist that you need to see this for professional reason, can’t you get a grant for professional development?

          • I think I’d have a hard time selling this as development. Perhaps I could point them to this review.

            I think Larry would have killed in a cocktail dress.

            • I’m running an advanced class on Miley Cyrus in Cinema, maybe you should put aside your snobby prejudices about her work, which you have not seen. Watch the Flowers video and admit that it knocks Olivier and Shakespeare into a cocked hat.

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