Josie and the Pussycats may seem like just another fun-filled teen movie, but it's so much deeper than that. It's not just the all-star cast, which includes Rachel Leigh Cook, Tara Reid, and Rosario Dawson, that makes Pussycats so amazing. The film touches on loaded themes such as consumerism and celebrity, media manipulation, and the price of fame all while doling out endless bops.
The film is a loose adaptation of the Josie and the Pussycats Hanna-Barbera comics. The 2001 movie takes elements of the comic books and gives them new life. Unfortunately, this film was a true box office bomb, raking in only $14.9 million with a production budget of $39 million. The soundtrack, however, went gold, selling over 500,000 copies.
While Josie and the Pussycats is one of those movies you can mindlessly watch over and over again, it also tackles big issues that seem all the more relevant today.
The Writer/Director Duo Gave Us Another Amazing Movie
It's pretty incredible that the writing/directing team behind Josie and the Pussycats also gave us Can’t Hardly Wait. Harry Elfont and Deborah Kaplan were responsible for capturing unrequited love, graduation, and the high school party scenes of the late 1990s. Elfont and Kaplan are true American heroes for their service of entertaining us throughout the '90s and early '00s. Hey, we’ll even turn a blind eye to the fact that they created Leap Year and Made of Honor.50Agree or Disagree?
It’s A True Meditation On The Correlation Between Celebrity And Consumerism
While other films have explored the relationship between celebrity culture and consumerism, few have done so as bluntly or as sharply as Josie and the Pussycats. After achieving fame, Josie recognizes that she's “a trend pimp," and she finds herself disturbed by her position as the 2001 version of an influencer. She realizes that if you're a celebrity figure, especially in American culture, people will buy whatever it is you’re pushing whether they need it or not.62Agree or Disagree?
The Soundtrack Is A Statement In Itself
The film ends with Josie and the Pussycats playing their unfiltered music to a crowd. The Pussycats are worried the crowd won't like the songs without subliminal messaging, but all the songs are super catchy, and the crowd goes wild. The soundtrack for the movie is full of bops, but it does feel fake given the movie's messaging.
Josie and the Pussycats is about three musicians wanting to make their music without having to push products, but it seems that the soundtrack itself is a product being pushed; it doesn’t feature any songs written or performed by the three main actresses, but the stars of Pussycats appear on the cover of the CD. Just as Josie and the Pussycats were used to push products onto teens, the three actresses were used to push this soundtrack, which they actually had no part in making. It's hard to tell if this incongruence is a point of hypocrisy or if it's another ironic statement on consumerism.62Agree or Disagree?
Tara Reid And Carson Daly Were Engaged
The early 2000s were a more innocent time. It was before we knew how deeply fame was harming stars like Britney Spears, and we could simply enjoy her show-stopping VMA performances at face value. It was also a time during which Tara Reid and Carson Daly were in love, and we were all rooting for it.
Reid and Daly met during her TRL appearance in 2000. They shared an apartment and were engaged shortly after, only to call off the engagement in 2001. However, fans of the Reid-Daly union will always have Josie and the Pussycats as a small reminder of the notable 2000s couple. In the film, Daly appears as himself, the host of TRL, and is an important figure in Wyatt and Fiona's scheme to brainwash the youth.72Agree or Disagree?