(Image via filmai.in)
(Image via filmai.in)

The favorite film:
Crossroads, a 2002 road trip dramedy directed by Tamra Davis

The synopsis:
Lucy, Kit and Mimi were best friends as children, but by the time they graduate from high school they’ve grown apart. Reuniting to dig up an old box of dreams that they buried when they were young, the pregnant Mimi invites her two old buddies to take a road trip to California with her. Mimi wants to compete in a singing competition in Los Angeles. Kit decides to go so she can see her fiance, who is in college in California. Lucy also tags along, but says they can drop her off in Arizona, where her estranged mother lives. The three girls embark on a road trip in a vintage car driven by a man named Ben who may or may not have killed a guy.

The cast:
Britney Spears as Lucy
Taryn Manning as Mimi
Zoe Saldana as Kit
Anson Mount as Ben

Fun facts:

  • Dan Aykroyd imagined his character, Lucy’s father, as a veteran of the Navy. He even came up with the idea to add a Navy tattoo to his character’s arm, asking a friend to draw it on for him.
  • According to IMDb, Anson Mount didn’t initially want the role of Ben, but was encouraged by Robert DeNiro, who helped him practice for the audition by reading with Mount (Mount reading “Ben,” DeNiro reading “Lucy”) during breaks on the set of City by the Sea.
  • Young Lucy is played by Britney Spears’ younger sister.
  • Britney Spears isn’t the only star of the film to have a song of hers included. A song from Taryn Manning’s band is used in the post-karaoke party scene at the hotel.
  • The band that Ben plays with at the party after graduation is Bowling for Soup. Three of their songs are featured in the film.
  • Britney Spears and her team came up with the concept for the film, hiring on Shonda Rhimes – now famous as the creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal – to write the script.
  • The hospital used in the film is from the set of the TV series Scrubs.
(Image via toutlecine.com)
(Image via toutlecine.com)

Favorite things:

  • The opening with young Lucy, Kit and Mimi always made my sister and I want to bury a time capsule.
  • Every girl’s graduation morning ritual: sing along to Madonna while you eat your cereal. (For some reason, as a kid, I always thought she was eating ice cream. Probably because I wished I could have ice cream for breakfast, and thought that reaching the age of a senior in high school would allow me to do so.)
  • Kit’s mom’s graduation outfit
  • Henry powdering himself like he just got out of a bath in 1909
  • Mimi punching her ex-boyfriend. GO, GIRL!
  • “And what? You think you’re gonna become, like, this big, fat, pregnant star?” -Kit (to Mimi)
  • “DAAAAAD, CUSTOMER!” -Kit (ignoring her job duties while on the phone with her fiance)
  • Anson Mount in a beanie
  • Anson Mount in plaid
  • Anson Mount shunning N*Sync
  • Anson Mount’s entire existence
  • Kit, Mimi and Lucy peeking out the door at Ben after Mimi admits she doesn’t know why he was in jail
  • Kit running from the car after realizing that she’s about to be left alone with Ben
  • “Why would I be mad at you? I don’t even know you…” -Lucy (to Ben. Frequently quoted by my sister and me.)
  • “This trip’s OVER.” -Lucy (overdramatically)
  • “GIT OFF THE STAAAGE.” -Random bar attendee
  • Ben looking around with a bewildered look on his face as his travel companions are boo’d off stage, as though he thought they were doing such a great job that he can’t believe anyone wouldn’t want to hear their karaoke.
  • The extras in the karaoke scene are completely gold. Trucker hat mullet guy, portly man in straw hat, middle-aged boppin’ soccer mom, etc.
  • The awesome dance moves of all of the extras behind Lucy as Ben counts the gang’s karaoke earnings
  • The stealing of Ben’s keys
  • We’re trying not to wake Ben up… but let’s sing loudly to Shania Twain and peel out of the gas station!
  • “I said I thought he didn’t kill anyone…” -Mimi
  • Ben’s rant about his car/being surrounded by “chicks”
  • Britney Spears reciting the lyrics to her own song as a “poem”
  • Kim Catrall as Lucy’s deadbeat mom
  • “You turn it in over THERE.” -Song contest guy, giving completely vague instructions
  • “My name is not ‘Kitty Kat’… and I am not your PET *punch*” -Kit
  • Super dramatic slow-mo globe falling down the stairs
  • “Just what were you thinking, running away with a PREGNANT girl?” -Lucy’s dad
  • “Don’t make me do what she did.” -Lucy to her dad. So dramatic!
(Image via MSN Entertainment)
(Image via MSN Entertainment)

I know this film is a strange addition to the “Favorite things about…” series, but I recently gave it a re-watch and couldn’t pass up doing a post on it. Not all favorites can be stellar films.

I saw Crossroads in its original theatrical run, when I was 10 years old. (I turned 11 in 2002, but this came out in February, months before my birthday.) Dad only agreed to take my sister and me to see it on the condition that there would be no singing in the film. Lo and behold, the movie begins, a few minutes pass without song… and then Britney Spears sings in her first scene. I distinctly remember my dad turning to me and whispering, with feigned anger, “I thought you said there wouldn’t be any singing in this!” It’s a fond memory of one of many days spent at the cinema when I was a kid.

For reasons of nostalgia and Anson Mount, I still have a soft spot for Crossroads, and I’m not ashamed to admit it. Even the world’s biggest cheesers can be special to some viewers.