ONE CAN'T HELP but wonder if Easy A director Will Gluck ever had the pleasure of an English class assignment that asked its students to reinterpret a piece of literature into amateur film, because Easy A has a similar joie de vivre, with the added bonus of a much better budget. Forcefully in reference to The Scarlet Letter, its delightfully likeable protagonist, Olive (Emma Stone), experiments with a societal ostracization that bears little technical resemblance to the trials of Hester Prynne, but which does feature her literally wearing a red letter "A" for most of its runtime.
Of course, there are remarkable differences: Olive is from an aggressively charming and über-liberal family in Ojai, and doesn't have a baby with a minister out of wedlock. She doesn't, in fact, do anything sexual. But she lies about it. A lot. And she gets paid to do so by guys at school who alternately want to "prove" their heterosexuality to their peers or otherwise augment their reputations—not by doing it, but saying they did. (In a curious bit of product placement, she is most often paid in gift cards to places like Amazon and Home Depot.) Pitted against her is a group of hypocritical young Christians led by Marianne (Amanda Bynes) and, quickly, her utterly useless "best friend" (Alyson Michalka), who even Olive can barely pretend to like.
The most important thing to know, though, is that this movie approaches Mean Girls territory on the fun scale—at least, for those of you who understand that statement as the recommendation it's meant to be.