Jane Austen’s classic Emma gets transplanted to nineties LA in Clueless, the comedy that launched (albeit briefly) a few Beverly Hills catchphrases such as ‘I’m audi’ (I’m out of here), ‘Monet’ (someone who looks pretty from a distance but is a mess up close) and ‘total Baldwin’ (a good-looking guy, as in actors Alec and Billy Baldwin).
Cher (Silverstone) lives with her lawyer dad (mum died in a freak liposuction accident) in a Beverly Hills mansion, has a colour-coordinated wardrobe to die for and a best pal named Dionne (Stacey Dash). At school the pair befriend new-girl Tai (Murphy, who sadly died in 2009) and decide to give her a make-over so she can snag a cute guy, while Cher sets her own sights on the brooding Christian (Justin Walker). Of course, Cher has a hunky stepbrother at home (Rudd) who’s much nicer, but writer/director Amy Heckerling has fun with the smart dialogue and situations Cher encounters along the way to true happiness.
Terrific stuff for teenage girls, this was spun off into a TV series featuring Dash, with Rachel Blanchard taking over the role of Cher, that ran from 1996 until 1999.
Is Clueless suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...