The story of the groundbreaking '70s female rock group the Runaways is recounted in this River Road Entertainment production focusing on the duo of guitarist/vocalist Joan Jett (portrayed by Twilight's Kristen Stewart) and lead vocalist/keyboardist Cherie Currie (Dakota Fanning) as they navigate a rocky road of touring and record label woes under the malevolent eye of abusive manager Kim Fowley (Michael Shannon) during their teen years. Acclaimed video artist Floria Sigismondi directs from her own script, with Scout Taylor-Compton co-starring as guitarist Lita Ford. ~ Jeremy Wheeler, Rovi
Director: Floria Sigismondi
Cast: Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning, Michael Shannon, Stella Maeve, Scout Taylor-Compton
Release Date: Apr 09, 2010
Rated R for sexual content, language and drug use all involving teens
Runtime: 1 hr. 45 min.
Genres: Drama, Drama, Music/Performing Arts
The Runaways, based on Cherie Currie’s memoir, is film that should be a lot more interesting and captivating than it is. Instead of exploring some of the more interesting angles of preteen exploitation and other more diverse themes, director Floria Sigismondi hits the usual notes of most rock band biography. Occasionally the first time director will hit a sweet spot, mostly during the musical numbers, and when she does the film really has a spark of life. Sadly, outside of those moments the film drags and feels more like a made for TV film with more explicit teenage drug use and sex as the only differentiating aspect. As a result strong performances from the film 3 main player in the film are mostly wasted. Dakota Fanning delivers an incredibly strong performance that full of texture and depth, probably more than is on the actual page. Kristen Stewart has the right attitude throughout but her character feels terribly underwritten for some reason, strange considering Joan Jett is one of the producers. Stella Maeve, Ali Shawkat and Scout Taylor-Compton are paid to hold instruments and remain mostly mute with Compton being allowed to scream from time to time. Michael Shannon delivers the most interesting performance as Kim Fowley and he’s easily the most interesting character in this tepid biography.