At the Senior Prom, the high school band hired to play tunes their instruments and shuffle on the stage. A young woman yawns as she leans in to talk to her boyfriend. Some students hang out at the bleachers, holding balloons.
Under dimmed lights, Avril Lavigne sits on a bench with a megaphone, shouting out the chorus of the song.
She tunes her guitar and a young man begins bobbing his head to the music. Students run past fallen balloons and rush to the stage, where the band is playing under a silver curtain.
Couples arrive in the auditorium, arm in arm, grinning. One couple makes out at the table, red plastic cups surrounding the white tablecloths.
On another bench, she sits, her hair messy, wearing a Radiohead t-shirt and plaid pants, her hand on her chin.
A couple poses for their photo, giving the sign of the horns. In another photo, a young woman piggybacks on top of her boyfriend underneath the silver cardboard stars.
A third couple makes out, painting a heart with their names in it on a wall in the hallway.
Her classmates jump and shout as she plays. A group of people run to the doors and through the hallway. A young man stencils the song’s title on the wall in one of the hallways.
She sits on a desk in an empty classroom and tears pages out of a book. She spins around on it.
Students sneak into the swimming pool. A young man tosses a shopping cart full of swimming toys into the pool. They cannonball in, fully clothed in their formal wear.
Students begin to trickle into the classroom, carrying streamers and writing on the chalkboard.
She skateboards down the hallway, with rainbow of streamers hanging from the ceiling. Students follow behind her.
Outside, she and her friends light sparklers, aiming them towards the sky.
In the classroom, she knocks over a desk onto the floor. In the gym, a young man slides down one of the decorations, turning it into a Slip N Slide.
She sits cross-legged in the hallway, wearing a white tank top and black tie around her neck, as one of her bandmates smashes his guitar against the wall.
In the classroom, she holds a stereo over her head while her classmates throw streamers at one another.
Confetti falls from the ceiling as the she and her band finish playing. They pop open champagne bottles and spray it into the crowd.
The poster, advertising the prom, falls from the ceiling. She pumps her fist in the hallway.
The Senior Prom, a night that is supposed to be is full of memories, has become an otherwise ordinary school regulated activity, with a long list set rules according to the district’s standards, limiting what music can be played as well dress code.
Avril Lavigne is able to get the students out of their boredom and fear of not being allowed to graduate once she arrives on the stage. With her cocked tiara and glistening white dress, she is the school’s free spirit, confident and restless, stoking the flames of destruction.
Nonetheless, the school is trashed after the prom. Decorations are torn and the walls have graffiti. The pool has toys and a cart inside, leaving behind some damage. It’s implied the students will face consequences and the chaperones (which are nowhere to be seen) will be punished.
The students, who for the most part, are well-behaved, act out from multiple pressures to behave which contradict one another and follow rules lacking common sense. Unfortunately, a school sponsored activity becomes bureaucratic and stifling, invoking double standards for the young women (how much of a bare midriff can be shown) but allowing young men to show up in any formal wear they desire.
Director: Robert Hales Year: 2013
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