Let me stop here for a moment. I know I am an adult. I know this is a children’s movie. I know I am an adult making fun of a children’s movie. And I know this may seem unfair or wrong or whatever. I could tell you the truth, which is that I really just don’t care. But, instead, let me ask you this: Shouldn’t children’s movies have standards, too? I mean, kids are young, not stupid. Mostly. And this kind of crappy movie is only creating more future Britneys and Oprahs and Hillarys. And it needs to END. If you’re with me, keep reading. If you’re not…please keep reading anyway. I’ll be sad if you go :(
Moving on. *Reminder* Not a play-by-play, some names may have been changed due to laziness, etc etc.
So I did go to see Hannah Montana, accompanied by the previously-mentioned Candace, on Friday night. I also just realized how pathetic that is. Anyway, we braved the 3.2 miles of wind and rain and arrived with an air of anticipation that could not be denied. Our story begins with Billy Ray Cyrus (speaking of pathetic), who, if you don’t know, plays the father of his real daughter, both in the show/movie and in life. Billy Ray is waiting for his kid to show up at her own concert, but we quickly learn that she is SO popular she can’t even get into her own show. Life can be hard. She finally makes it with her BFF Lilly (the only decent actor in the movie) in tow, and they change into their SOOPER-SEKRIT costumes. While they change, Billy remains IN THE ROOM WHAAAAAT. And he STAYS until Miley/Hannah/Miley, literally in the process of removing her belt, tells him to get out EW, BILLY RAY CYRUS, WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU TO MAKE YOU THIS WAY.
Anyway, the concert starts and immediately segues into a into a music video M/H/M is making, which involves her dancing around all skankified and grinding with some buff Hawaiian guys. Disney. Movie. The video ends, and M/H/M goes into her tent-trailer, where she starts to remove her wig when AHH AHH RANDOM OLD BRITISH MAN IN HER TENT. M/H/M is freaked at first, and then the guy’s like, “Don’t be scared,” and M/H/M is like, “Oh, okay, cool, what’s up, then.” This is NOT your example for interacting with strangers, kids. M/H/M’s publicist, whose name I don’t remember even a little, quickly informs us that this ugly man writes for a tabloid and is looking to do an expose on M/H/M OH NO.
We move to M/H/M at school wearing short-shorts and sucking at volleyball. Publicist shows up and drags her off for shopping or autographing or more whoring around or something. As M/H/M leaves, BFF Lilly reminds her, rather pitifully, that BFF Lilly’s 16th birthday par-tay is later that day and not to miss it. M/H/M promises to be back in time as Publicist all but drags her away by the hair. This should immediately warn you that M/H/M will likely not make BFF Lilly’s party.
And then a shoe fight breaks out. Which is exactly what it sounds like, by the way. While shopping, M/H/M and TYRA BANKS (sad day for her) spot the same pair of shoes and begin to fight over them. Shoe companies should really consider making more than one pair of shoes in the same size and style OH, WAIT, THEY DO. But M/H/M and Tyra fight anyway. The best part is when M/H/M throws one of the shoes like a Chinese throwing star and almost gives Tyra one of those smoker’s throat holes, like, DANG, girl, maybe don’t murder anyone and THEN we cut to M/H/M and Publicist riding in a limo. Amidst the shoe fighting, we learned two things: M/H/M is missing BFF Lilly’s birthday par-tay, and she is also missing saying goodbye to her college-bound brother Jackson, and now she is conflicted as she rides around town. Her dilemma is thus: She can’t get out of Hannah’s limo looking like Miley and she can’t show up to BFF Lilly’s soiree looking like Hannah (I guess Jackson’s out of luck. What a sweet sister), so what does she do? She goes to BFF Lilly’s party looking like Hannah. But—you just said—there was the—and then you—ASDJKL;;;. Upon “Hannah’s” arrival, the birthday par-tay-goers swarm Hannah and BFF Lilly is sad and then M/H/M begins to SING ONSTAGE, and more swarming ensues and now BFF Lilly is sad and mad and you are a BAD FRIEND, M/H/M.
Creepy Ugly British Reporter Alert: the creepy ugly British reporter is at the now former BFF Lilly’s party. Ewww. As former BFF Lilly storms out, Creepy Ugly British Reporter asks something about M/H/M’s background or origin or favorite way to be a terrible friend or something and former BFF Lilly is basically like, “Oh, she totally lives at 123 Cowpatty Lane, Some City, Tennessee, 37379. Do you need directions?” I mean, I know M/H/M just screwed you over big-time, former BFF Lilly, but I think you’re even now.
We cut to M/H/M fighting with Billy Ray (I’m pretty sure his name is changed in the movie, but I can’t remember it. I dare you to ask me if I care.) about the shoe incident. For some reason he thinks that getting into life-or-death fistfights with supermodels over shoes is unhealthy. I’m inclined to agree, but M/H/M and Publicist have already booked her next gig in NYC and she doesn’t have TIME to be emotionally fit right now. Really, who does these days. So Billy Ray Cyrus is all “FINE, GO TO NEW YORK” and the audience is like “Oooh, bad parenting, never give into the child’s brattiness” but it’s already done and ohhh, I bet Billy Ray Cyrus is going to trick her somehow.
Yep, I was right (although to be fair, Helen Keller could have seen that coming)—Billy Ray Cyrus and M/H/M get on a plane to what he SAYS is New York but what is actually—get ready—TENNESSEE. Dun dun dunnnn. I guess they’re from the Upper East Side of Tennessee, because the part I’m from definitely does not look that good. As M/H/M deplanes (“De plane, de plane!” Anyone?), she is greeted by her brother in an old truck. Hey, don’t look at me; they told me he was at college.
On the way to Grandma’s house (no, really—they’re visiting Grandma), M/H/M realizes she hasn’t been a punk in a few minutes, so she starts whining about going to New York and whyyyy does she have to be here and does anyone have any guuuuummm and it’s hot in heeeere when Billy Ray Cyrus is finally like, “Being Hannah has turned you into an unbelievably snot-nosed, snobby kid, and we’re all starting to hate you, so SHUT UP.” I may have embellished a little, but that’s the basic sentiment, and M/H/M demands that Daddy stops the car. So he does, and she drags her sparkle suitcase to the nearest fence and decides she’ll just wait for a ride there, that sounds safe, and then a horse eats her wig. She snatches it back as we learn that the horse ironically belongs to M/H/M and is named Blue Jeans. After M/H/M is done accepting her “Dumbest Name for a Pet” award, she puts the wig away in her Transformers make-up box and Billy Ray Cyrus tells her that
Being the resourceful three people that she is, M/H/M decides to ride Blue Jeans to the house. It turns out that calling a horse stupid and then making it carry your crap is not a way to make it love you, and Blue Jeans throws her off in like two steps. WHY, WHYYY do bad things happen to stuck-up people. But, wait, it’s okay—a little blonde boy has come to rescue her on HIS horse. Emphasis on BOY, by the way, because this kid looks about twelve. Apparently his arrival has been highly anticipated, because all over the theatre girls began exalting this boy’s cuteness, he can ride a HORSE, he’s got a COWBOY HAT on, he’s got five fingers on EACH HAND, OMGGGGG. This is how people develop drinking problems. Anyway, the blonde boy—Trevor? Travis? Travis. Right? Yeah. Travis. Definitely Travis. Or Trevor—manages to get M/H/M and her crap to Grandma’s. He actually works for Grandma, and he is not twelve, he’s a whole sixteen years old, thank you very much. And he and M/H/M used to play together in mud pits or something as children. Also, the girls behind me are ready to rush the screen and throw themselves at the very image of this boy. And they are expressing their love loudly.
M/H/M goes inside to find her dad jamming with some relatives or something at a gen-yoo-ine Tennessee sing-a-long. In the first shot I spotted three people I could be related to. Anyway, they’re singing with the Rascal Flatts—wait, the Rascal Flatts? Are you serious? This is HANNAH MONTANA, Rascal Flatts, and you are TOO GOOD for this. Get out. Everyone’s singing along when M/H/M is like OKAY READY TO LEAVE NOW and everyone gets reeeally quiet, way to ruin the fun, M/H/M. After an awkward silence, the hootin’ and hollerin’ continues, and Grandma comes up to Billy Ray Cyrus and tells him to go hit on some chick sitting by herself in the Loser Corner. He goes up to her and we find out her name is Lorelai and OMG, IT’S MELORA HARDIN. Jan, from The Office! WHY ARE YOU HERE, MELORA HARDIN? Does Disney have some kind of dirt on all of these people? Because I cannot figure out how they got all these people who aren’t C- minus celebrities to appear in this film unless there is some serious blackmail-age going on. Anyway, Billy Ray tries to be suave and what-not and winds up breaking all of these collector plates Grandma has been collecting since dinosaurs roamed the earth. Smooth.
Then there is some touching scene with M/H/M and Grandma that involves some rhyme Billy Ray used to sing to M/H/M, blah blah bored blah. Sometime after THAT, M/H/M overhears Billy Ray and Grandma talking about what a whiny kid M/H/M is (or something like that) and M/H/M decides that the only way to get out of this fourth circle of hell will be to act “countrified,” which apparently means fixing your hair in pigtails and then wearing a checked shirt under overalls. O-kay. She decides to go gather some eggs from the chickens and then decides to stick them in her POCKET for safe-keeping. Then she sits on them. Stuck-up AND stupid, nice. Of course, Travis sees her doing this and darn it if her moronic ways ain’t the just cutest thing he’s ever seen.
After M/H/M comes back inside and Grandma makes fun of her, Billy Ray Cyrus goes to do some yard work and finds that LORELAI IS WORKING THERE TOO WHAT ARE THE ODDS. They awkwardly flirt as Melora Hardin wonders why she’s in this movie and Billy Ray wonders if he’ll ever be successful in life again without being his daughter’s co-star.
This is when the hail started pounding on the roof of the theatre and we got word (from the husband of a friend sitting near us, not the theatre) that a tornado was headed our way. There we sat, surrounded by small children. In a theatre. On the third floor of a mall. Awesome. I missed the next part of the movie because I went to see how likely our chances of death were. Jackson was playing with an ostrich (named Tammy Wynette, HA) when I left. I got about five steps into the hallway when a cop told me to GET BACK INSIDE THE THEATRE AND STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS. I complied, taking care to stay away from windows, which was remarkably easy since there were no windows around—it’s a movie theatre. The excitement from my thirty-second adventure was nothing compared to the thrills of this movie, though.
Shall we continue? Oh, let’s. So by the time I got back, the ostrich was gone, but we had something BETTER in its place: M/H/M went to the market with Grandma! Except she whines the whole time, and then Ugly Old British Guy shows up and hi-LAR-ious hijinks ensue as M/H/M ruins like three peoples’ kiosk things in order to trick the ugly man. He then asks her if she knows Hannah Montana, and she and Grandma give him fake directions to an old house, oh, haha, this is a clever movie, and THEN he falls into a mud pit, hahaha, ahahaha, haha, HA HA HA and please let’s switch to something else now.
Hey, dreams do come true—we’ve switched to M/H/M singing in a barn loft. She is singing a terrible song that I’m pretty sure I’ve heard on the radio like 429423 times and Travis overhears and stalks up the ladder to hear more. She stops and he says it’s “okay” or something equally heinous and then is like, “Yep, just wanted to tell you it sucked, see ya” and runs off. M/H/M cannot bear the thought
Then he says it’s time for her to learn to ride and she says she already can and he’s like, Yeah, you’re a regular champion, remember when your horse THREW YOU OFF earlier? Did you get a prize for that? GET ON THE HORSE. And now we see a lovely musical montage of the two of them riding around on horses, laughing gaily, giggling, and making me seriously consider braving the storm outside. Then they are on a rope swing over a lake and they both jump in and he is shirtless and they are both soaking wet and that is all I am saying about that.
We cut to the benefit. Wait, which benefit? Ah, the benefit mentioned earlier when I was being yelled at by the mall cop. Apparently the town is going to crap, and they need a concert to save it. Except if the town is dying, no one has money; and if no one has money, no one can pay for a benefit, much less donate to it; and if that’s true, this benefit will actually cost them more money than just sitting around drinking in their underwear would have, but whatever. Anyway, Billy Ray is blessing us with his musical supremacy as we journey into the Benefit Barn. He thankfully stops pretty quickly and then Lorelai hugs him. He seems to enjoy the hug (mhmm) until he sees M/H/M watching them and all but pushes Lorelai away and sprints off like he’s on fire (mmhmm).
And then Taylor Swift takes the stage. Are you freaking kidding me with this? Taylor SWIFT? Enough’s enough, Disney. I mean, I can understand Billy Ray Cyrus; his career is deader than the cult people who drank the poison Kool-Aid so they could meet Jesus on a comet. But the rest of these people are successful, popular celebrities who have great careers and who aren’t like fifty and still acting thirty. Disney is about to get a strongly-worded letter from me.
Anyway, Travis comes over and asks M/H/M to dance, she says yes, and they sway around the dance floor as I try to get my jaw to stop hanging open from the shock of seeing this crappy movie suck in so many decent singers. Then Taylor comes to her senses and runs screaming out of the room (okay, not really), and we see Billy Ray and Lorelai have a Very Serious Talk about family and togetherness and love and feelings and just make out already, I’m getting old over here.
Once Travis and M/H/M stop dancing, he suggests that SHE sing, wouldn’t that be nifty, and she reluctantly agrees. I imagine her reluctance is due to the fact that she is afraid that people might recognize her voice as Hannah Montana’s, but don’t worry, M/H/M, people here are exceptionally stupid and will never notice. She sings a catchy little ditty about combining farm life and city life, hometown girl and pop star—wait. WAIT. Haven’t we heard this song already? I could swear we’ve heard some similar lyrics…oh, no, it’s just that ALL her songs are about the exact same thing, so I got them mixed up. Never mind. My bad. Anyway, it’s kind of like a cross between a line dance and the Cha Cha Slide, and I guess these people aren’t as dumb as I thought, because they all manage to learn these complicated dance moves in about a minute and a half, and it is just so joyful as they end the song and celebrate their hand-eye coordination. But the merriment is cut short when Some Guy stands up and basically says, “This is a terrible way to raise money, you’ve probably only lost money,
And then the screen went black.
No, that is not another dream of mine coming true. The movie really cut off, and the house lights came up, and some lady came down to the front of the theatre and said, “Everyone, please stand up and exit through this door,” indicating an emergency exit. No identification of herself, no explanation of the situation, just told us to get out. Which is good, I think, because in a group of eighty people trying to squeeze out one exit, most of whom are children, you definitely want to make them as prone to panicking as possible. But exit we did into some random storage-looking space that looks like the unfinished parts of people’s basements. We were brought out there and then summarily ditched. Seriously. The lady led us out there, said “Stay here” and left again. Oookay. Those of us with cell phones learned that the Buford area was in the “corner” of the tornado’s mighty reach, and we probably weren’t in any danger, but Mall of Georgia didn’t want to deal with a hundred lawsuits so they just stuck us in the Panic Room until they could figure out what to do with us. It really wasn’t that bad. Except it was kind of hot with so many people and OH, yeah, we were still on the THIRD FLOOR. So instead of death by theatre chair in the face, I can experience death by concrete wall in the face? Seems like a lateral move, Mall of Georgia.
Then they moved us downstairs, still in the storage area, but less likely to get sucked away or have a house fall on us. And I know it’s not funny, and I know I have a twisted sense of humor, but the whole scene was pretty amusing. Most people were just annoyed, all of us were getting a little toasty, and I kept thinking If I die because I went to see the Hannah Montana movie, I’m gonna be so mad, but after about fifteen minutes in the basement, they told us we were free, freeeeee! and we could go back to the theatre. Then came the real bad news: They said they were going to start the movie over. From the beginning. WHAT. No. No no no no no no no. I am not sitting through the same hour again; the first time was bad enough. I think enough of us looked mutinous that the theatre workers decided to tread carefully and restarted the movie from where it had stopped. Whew.
So where were we? M/H/M had just promised that her alter-ego would make an appearance. Creepy Ugly British Guy has also joined the fun, and listens as M/H/M promises to try to get Hannah there. And then we cut to M/H/M waving at a limo pulling up in front of Grandma’s, and Hannah Montana…gets…out. That is a neat trick. No, wait, it’s former BFF Lilly. But she flew out to Tennessee to help M/H/M lie to the world, so I guess she’s back to just BFF Lilly? Wasn’t she like ridiculously mad at M/H/M the last time we saw her? Mad enough to basically give up her secret to Old Ugly British Guy? Only now she and M/H/M are hugging, so… huh. Now I know why I blocked out being sixteen.
Anyway, the plan is for BFF Lilly to pretend to be Hannah for now, although when concert time comes, I’m not sure how well that will go. BFF Lilly, still dressed as Hannah, and M/H/M, dressed like a hillbilly, are having a whispered discussion when Lorelai knocks and says she needs to talk to Hannah. In order to complete their devious and totally well-planned scheme, M/H/M covers BFF Lilly’s face with a towel and pretends she is sleeping or some crap like that. Lorelai promises to be brief, and then for some freaking reason M/H/M leaves the room. Yes, good thinking, M/H/M. I think leaving your friend to pretend she is you while you go frolicking around outside or wherever is a fantastic way to hide your secret. In M/H/M’s absence, Lorelai asks “Hannah” to attend a dinner with the mayor in order for…something big or good or both to happen. My brain cells are mad at me for seeing this movie and have subsequently rebelled, so I can’t quite remember what the dinner is for. Anyway, BFF Lilly agrees.
M/H/M sees Travis outside and decides to impress him with her Hannahtude and dons her Hannah wig and clothes. She goes up to him and flirts and is like a foot away and how how HOW does he not recognize that it is Miley. Same exact face. Same exact voice. And unless that blonde wig doubles as a cloaking device, any idiot could see that it is the EXACT SAME PERSON. This is worse than people not connecting Superman and Clark Kent. Anyway, Travis confesses to this complete stranger that he has a thing for Miley, and Hannah encourages him to ask her out, like right that second. He agrees, and then M/H/M suddenly realizes that SHE is Miley, whoops, so she has to scurry down and act nonchalant at the chicken coop before Travis beats her there. I mean gets there first, not hits her, although I’m thinking someone needs to deck this girl. He finds M/H/M painting the chicken coop, which looks way less sucky than it did, and asks if she wants to go to dinner. She responds with a basic, “I guess.” Attention, ladies: There is a fine line between playing hard-to-get and being a punk loser. M/H/M’s response is that of the punk loser.
And then the most horrific thing happens: We find out that the dinner and the date are on the SAME NIGHT! NOOO! Well, I guess she’ll just have to move the date to the next night, that seems logical. Oh, OR she could decide she is just going to do both on the same night, because no way will that blow up in her face. So she goes to the dinner for the mayor and spends about ten minutes there before finally showing up for her date with Travis, and she keeps going back and forth and back and forth and I can’t believe it but I am actually starting to feel sorry for this guy. Poor kid just wants a date, and his date keeps leaving and being mysterious. Every time M/H/M exits from one building to the next, changing from Hannah to Miley and back, this little blonde girl outside just keeps watching her. At first it is cute, but after about the fifth shot it becomes more creepy, like that girl from Signs. Adorable, but a little too much of the crazy.
Anyway, Billy Ray finally tells her she has to stay at the mayor’s dinner and can’t leave again, but then some random ferret (I promise, it’s a ferret) somehow escapes from someone’s pocket and knocks over a flaming cake and everyone has to leave, so M/H/M decides to go back to her date, and she is running and pulling off the wig mid-step and UH-OH, HE’S STANDING RIGHT IN FRONT OF HER. ON THE SIDEWALK. AND SHE IS WIGLESS. AND HE SAW HER BECOME WIGLESS. WHICH MEANS HE KNOWS HER SECRET. AND HE LOOKS MAD. AND, REALLY, WHO WOULDN’T BE? SHE’S NOT VERY CONSIDERATE OF OTHER PEOPLE. AND SHE WAS MEAN TO HIM. FRANKLY, I WOULD BE ANGRY, TOO. I MIGHT EVEN PUNCH HER. I DON’T THINK HE WOULD. BUT YOU NEVER KNOW ABOUT SOME PEOPLE. IT’S ALWAYS THE ONES YOU LEAST EXPECT, YOU KNOW? Anyway, she’s like… haha, good joke, huh? And he’s like yeah, almost as funny as it will be when I break up with you, and then he walks away and she is crying and there is a lot of slooowww mooootionnnn and the little girl is like wtf as M/H/M goes back inside. Billy Ray sees her crying and is about to go comfort her when Lorelai is like HEY HEY WHAT’S GOING ON GUYS and Billy Ray basically tells her to shut it and go away, he doesn’t have time for her right now, and she flounces off and M/H/M feels even worse because now she’s even destroying other people’s relationships, what a home wrecker.
So now we cut to M/H/M sitting mournfully in a shed in the rain, strumming her guitar and wondering where it all went wrong. I know where it went wrong, pick me, pick me! Billy Ray joins her and she sings him a song she just wrote, and then he starts to sing it with her, even though she JUST SAID that she finished it like a minute ago, but who am I to judge the clairvoyant abilities of washed-up country singers, and they sing and his face kind of says Bet you wish you listened to Daddy now, but his actual mouth says not to worry, things will be okay, they’ll stick together as a family, and even if everyone does hate her they’re leaving for home again in a few days, so cheer up, Buttercup. The best way to cheer up? Finish painting a chicken coop in the dead of night. She is so into it that she falls asleep on the roof, and BFF Lilly wakes her up and then M/H/M falls off, and yay, maybe she’ll have to wear a body cast and can’t sing, but no such luck, she’s fine.
She has promised this dying craphole of a town a concert, and a concert the dying craphole town shall get. Everyone is excited to see Hannah Montana, and they love her and want to hold her hand and she is jamming out good and then. she. stops. She looks at the crowd, which includes her family and all fifty people from this town, along with a couple hundred screaming teenagers, and says, “I can’t do this.” Then she goes on for about an hour saying how this wasn’t how things were supposed to be, it had started out as the DREAM, and she was just Miley, not seven different people, and she can’t go on, and I thought maybe she would try to like jump off the stage in a mini-suicide attempt or something, but instead she reaches up. And pulls. Her wig. Off. Off. Omg. I 100% did not see this coming. Her dad really didn’t see this coming, because we see him with this look of WHAT ARE YOU DOING, DID WE NOT JUST TALK ABOUT FAMILYNESS AND GROUP DECISIONS. But it’s okay, because now she is going to sing the horrible radio song, and she begins warbling about how much fun the climb of life can be, and something about some other stuff, and if there is a key in this song, she hasn’t found it yet, and everyone is so proud and I really thought I would see some lighters or cell phones go up as the crowd swayed.
Once she is finished, she gets a lot of applause, but then someone is like… so, where’s Hannah again? and M/H/M—well, I guess she is just M/M now—is like, “I just want to be Miley.” And the crowd person is like, “Yyyyeah, uh, listen… we want Hannah.” And you can see this look on her face like Well, the wig is off, so it’s a little late now, and then the blonde girl from earlier is like, “Please be Hannah.
Then she performs again. As Hannah. Even though the whole world just saw her give up her secret identity. But I guess they don’t care, and in a very surreal bit of active denial, M/H/M performs as Hannah, and everyone just acts like the last five minutes didn’t happen. Billy Ray and Lorelai kiss Disney-style, which means you don’t see any actual liplock, just some closeness and mashing of faces. The same goes for M/H/M and Travis, who I forgot to tell you showed up right before her song as Miley and has now suddenly forgiven all of her lies. The End.
So I had a terrifying experience Friday. And there was a tornado, too. Ba-dum-ching.