Picks and Pans Review: Clueless

updated 07/31/1995 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/31/1995 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Alicia Silverstone, Stacey Dash

Even if you were popular and every cheerleader signed your yearbook, high school was never the fun it is here. Clueless is a frisky, frivolous, funny satire about a Beverly Hills teen princess (Silverstone, in a career-making performance) who's so busy running the lives of others that she neglects her own.

Director-screenwriter Amy Heckerling has said that her heroine in Clueless was inspired by Jane Austen's Emma, a know-it-all who constantly interfered—out of the goodness of her heart, of course—in the lives of others. Here, Emma is a 15-year-old named Cher (Silverstone). Her best friend is Dionne (Dash)—"We were both named after great singers of the past who now do infomercials," Cher explains—and these two children of privilege spend their days chatting on cell phones, trolling the mall and congratulating themselves on being the most sought-after girls in school. Clueless doesn't have much plot, but what it does have is a heaping helping of attitude, up-to-the-second slang and an underlying sweetness that differentiates it from most teen comedies. Way cool. (PG-13)

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