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BRATZ FANS, ACT FAST

You're about the only audience for Bratz: The Movie, which isn't likely to be in theaters long.

I'm sure many girls - myself included - can admit to having played with the popular Bratz dolls. After seeing Bratz: The Movie, I think this might be a movie just for fans of the toys.

The original four dolls are at the center of this live-action movie, which takes off as they begin their first year of high school. The Bratz - Yasmin (Nathalia Ramos), Jade (Janel Parrish), Sasha (Logan Browning) and Cloe (Skyler Shaye) - have been BFF since the moment they met. But everything changes when they arrive at Carry Nation High.

The girls discover the social jungle of cliques, run by student body president Meredith Baxter Dimly (Chelsea Staub). Meredith is the true brat in this movie, a rich girl who thinks the world revolves around her. She brings her dog Paris (a little inside joke on Paris Hilton, perhaps?) everywhere, including school. Can any kid really do that?

The girls let the cliques get the best of them. They have always supported each other's personalities, talents and unique fashion styles, but they are torn apart. They must find a way to regain their friendship and knock snooty Meredith off her perch.

This movie has good lessons: Be true to yourself, stand up for your friends and never give up on your dreams. And the girls' journey into high school is a story that will touch every teenager's life.

But I didn't think too highly of this movie, mostly because of Meredith's ignorant attitude toward life. That got pretty annoying quite early.

The movie was just average. The girls in the lead roles have had little experience on the big screen, and although the dolls do seem bratty, with their big eyes and pouty lips, the girls in the movie are sweet and kind-hearted with a passion for fashion.

There is enough for fans of the dolls to want to see the movie, but that's about all.

Kaitlyn Sferrazza, 12, will be in eighth grade at St. Jude Cathedral School in St. Petersburg.

Review

Bratz: The Movie

Grade: C

Director: Sean McNamara

Cast: Nathalia Ramos, Janel Parrish, Logan Browning, Skyler Shaye and Chelsea Staub

Screenplay: Susan Estelle Jansen, based on story by David Eilenberg and Adam de la Pena

Rating: PG; some thematic elements

Running time: 124 min.

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