Before we start, I need you to understand that I am a feminist. I love women. Nothing gets me going like thinking about Gloria Steinem. I wake up every morning and pray to “The Bell Jar.” In r/AmItheAsshole, I always side with the F(23).

But, I am also sick of seeing strong, hypercompetent women in the media. I am sick of Rey Skywalkers and Hermione Grangers and Gerri Kellmans. I am sick of women having to be smarter and better and cooler than everyone else in order to be good characters. I know this is a pivot made by Hollywood in response to the flack they have received for creating abysmal and flimsy female characters for decades. But complex characters do not always need to be successful and smarter-than. They can be pathetic and still be interesting.

I am sick of girlbosses. I want more girlfailures. I want the women I see on screen to really, really suck. For years, I have wanted a movie made for women like me, complex and complicated and total losers. And finally, “Bottoms” has granted that wish.

“Bottoms” follows two completely pathetic high-school best friends as they start an all-girl fight club in order to get laid. Josie (Ayo Edebiri) and PJ (Rachel Sennott) are two self-proclaimed “ugly, untalented gays” who have never known the touch of a woman. They’re dorks. They’re losers. They are stupid teenagers who lie and self-sabotage and are selfish and awkward. They feel real, like the kids we’ve all seen walking down the halls, the weird kids who have no friends.

Rachel Sennott, known for “Bodies, Bodies, Bodies” and “Shiva Baby”, especially excels at portraying a girlfailure. PJ is mean and cruel in a way that only a teenage girl can be. Her jokes land flat. She bulldozes over her friends. She’s flawed and because of that, she’s hilarious. For the first time, I’ve seen a woman be funny in the way Jonah Hill was in “Superbad” or Eric Cartman is in “South Park.” The audience is supposed to laugh at how awful they are.

The rest of the cast is excellent as well. Ayo Edebiri is wonderful at playing awkward and passive Josie — a standout scene was her hilarious improvised monologue on how if she doesn’t end up with her crush, she’s doomed to stay closeted and marry a gay pastor and have her kid resent her. Kaia Gerber plays Brittany, PJ’s bulimic cheerleader crush. Gerber is incredible at playing a deadpan cool girl. She delivers some of the most ridiculous lines with impressive dryness and perfect timing. Nicholas Galitzine plays Jeff, the school’s star football player who has a penchant for MILFs and never sheds his bright blue school football uniform. Galitzine excels at playing a tantrum-throwing drama queen. He brings so much Kenergy to the role. And apart from just the leads, all of the cast does a great job.

Excellent performances are to be expected though. Director Emma Seligman gives her actors so much room to chew the scenery. Everyone seems to be having so much fun being as ridiculous and absurd as possible. Seligman claimed that her intention in making “Bottoms” was to bring back “over-the-top high school movies” while making it “ queer and female-driven.” And she accomplished just that.

“Bottoms” is raunchy and weird and surrealistic. Because of this, it approaches queerness and feminism in a way that feels very refreshing. There are no tropey coming-out scenes or long-winded monologues about how difficult it is to be a woman. Instead, “Bottoms” handles its themes with dark humor. My favorite darkly funny scene is when the fight club is attempting to bond and PJ asks them, “Who here has been raped? Even gray-area stuff?” All of the girls slowly raise their hands. This scene reflected the way my friends and I laugh about our traumas. It’s funny and offensive and perfect.

However, this movie also contains a lot of heart. It is full of tenderness and care and teenage realness. Even though the situations depicted in the film are absurd and ridiculous, the characters’ responses to them are very  authentic. This movie perfectly showcases big teenage emotions. I relate so deeply to the desire to blow things up whenever things don’t go my way.

“Bottoms” is a perfect movie for losers and freaks and weirdos. It’s a movie that encapsulates the queer female experience without being preachy or corny. It’s 90 minutes of pure fun and absurdity. Be sure to go check it out.



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