THE TO DO LIST is the kind of movie you'd want adolescents to see and discuss. But they won't be able to get in unless you accompany them. So get ready. If America were the kind of adult society we often to claim to be -- fundamentalists of all stripes aside -- any film that explored sex and sexuality with the novelty, charm, intelligence, fun and, yes, raunch (the real thing, not the pseudo variety we more often get) of this one would be embraced. But these films are usually rejected out of hand : Look at Jon Kasdan's so-good-you-probably-didn't-even-hear-of-it The First Time, or the Scandinavian whoopie cushion Turn Me On, Dammit. To those and a very few others, we can add this new, very funny, envelope-pushing movie from writer/director Maggie Carey, below.
Aubrey Plaza (below and on poster, above) of Parks & Rec fame and Safety Not Guaranteed. Ms Plaza will hit 30 next year, but she still manages to make a relatively believable teenager -- looks-wise and (more important) emotionally. Most important (for our and the movie's edification), Plaza is funny and versatile -- going from controlling nerd to sexy young woman and hitting just about every stop in between.
Rachel Bilson -- uses sex (along with other people) for her own benefit, while the sisters' parents (Connie Britton and Clark Gregg, both pricelessly on-the-mark, as always) have their own agenda: She's all for it and, in fact, wants to help it along (with lubricant); Dad says no, of course -- until the usual pretense of true love and waiting-till-the-wedding go along with it.
Scott Porter (the hunk), Johnny Simmons (above, right, as the best friend) and Bill Hader (below, who plays the boss at the outdoor community swimming pool at which Brandy finds a summer job). Mr. Hader's role bears no small resemblance to that of Sam Rockwell's in The Way, Way Back, though the two charac-ters and the tone of the two films could hardly be more different.
Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Donald Glover, and a nearly unrecognizable Andy Samberg. By the time our heroine has discovered sex -- and how different it can be, depending on the partner -- I suspect that you will be so firmly ensconced in the movie's attitude and philosophy that you may be surprised at yourself. I hope so, anyway. And though the film flirts with some feel-good sentimentality toward the end, it smartly draws back just in time.