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Loosely based on The Reluctant Debutante (1958) starring Sandra Dee, this family-friendly comedy features popular Nickelodeon teen star Amanda Bynes in her first feature-starring performance after her debut in Big Fat Liar (2002). She plays teenager Daphne Reynolds, who lives in New York City with her musician mother, Libby Reynolds (Kelly Preston). After she turns seventeen, Daphne is undecided about her future, so she takes off by herself to London in search of her father. She immediately meets cute musician Ian Wallace (Oliver James) before sneaking in to her father's estate to surprise him. He turns out to be Lord Henry Dashwood (Colin Firth), a fabulously wealthy aristocrat who doesn't even know that she exists. He had met her mother in Morocco and the two were married in a tribal ceremony. Upon their return to England, she left him and went back to the U.S. without ever revealing that she was pregnant. The uptight Henry is already flustered by his campaign for election, advised ...
The folks banging this movie have to get real. It's about an average girl (Bynes) who gets to meet her dad, who's in the process of running for major political office in England. It's not about Yankee superiority over the Brits (sheesh!), it's a simple fantasy about the effect a teenage girl has on her once-stuffy dad in stuffy society. If you're politically offended by this movie, imagine Amanda as a carefree Portugese girl visiting her long-lost dad, a member of U.S. Congress from Massachusetts, and chill out. That being said, Amanda Bynes is a cool and attractive leading lady/girl and plays very well with the other characters in this film. It's all been done millions of times before, and it's not Oscar material, but it was a pleasant diversion for me.
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