Writer: Keonna Burnett
Recently, I came across The Outcasts, your average, cliche comedy with a perception of high school that only exist in our imaginations.
In The Outcasts, Jodi and Mindy (best friends) are tricked into going to their first High School party, where they’re introduced to beer, beer pong, and other behaviors of the popular kids, all to humiliate Jodi by the end of the night. The two then seek revenge, obtain social power, and quite frankly don’t understand how to handle their newfound popularity. Mindy takes revenge too far, which eventually threatens her friendship, the budding romance between Jodi and Dave, and her future as a MIT student.
While scrolling through the new Netflix Releases, I’ll be the first to admit that the cast was what lured me into watching this movie. I was stoked to see so many actors and actresses from my childhood come together, and in some cases reunite onscreen. Jodi (Victoria Justice of Victorious), a band geek, and Mindy (Eden Sher from The Middle), a science nerd, were the main characters in the film. Virginia, played by Ashley Rickards of MTV’s Awkward, plays the brain behind uniting the new ‘nerd’ student council, and making the team effective. Dave, played by Avan Jogia also from Victorious, was neutral between the popular kids and the rest of the student body, after developing a crush a Jodi, and eventually leaving Whitney (Claudia Lee), Mackenzie (Peyton List), and Colin (Will Peltz) behind. For the most part, the actors and actresses suited their roles well.
What I liked about the movie was how relatable the main characters were to the average high schooler, yet fought their fought their way to the top of their social class simply by sticking together, and defending each other. However, I didn’t like how they once portrayed the light hearted science geek, as a rebellious prankster willing to sacrifice everything she’d worked for, all to get revenge. She became power-hungry, and for the character itself seemed extremely unnatural.
This story uncovered a lot about the right and wrong ways to treat people, and what it’s like to be a status seeking teen. The message given was that your place in a social hierarchy doesn’t define you as a person, or matter at all when it comes to achieving what you want. I think what others will take from this story is that high school should be the the time to focus on you, and nothing else.
This movie would appeal to teenagers, young adults, and anyone who’d enjoy clean dramatic comedy. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone into more serious films rated over PG 13, like this one. Honestly, I don’t think you’d enjoy this movie unless you’re in the age group who remembers the cast as child television stars. Though, the movie was a lot of fun and unique to any high school experiences I’ve ever heard of.