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The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

‘Bottoms’ is on top

Amanda Riha

I knew “Bottoms” was going to be a great movie when teenage lesbian Josie — played by Ayo Edebri — went on an improvised, minute-long monologue about being forced to marry a closeted evangelical man because she can’t find a girlfriend just minutes into the film. 

“Then I’m gonna get pregnant, we’re gonna have to join a church, he’ll be the gay pastor … and yea, sure, his sermons are good, but everybody knows he’s fruity,” Josie rants, slamming the steering wheel in her car. “And by the way, our son, Hezekiah, hates us because he knows we’re closeted, and we try to make it work for him but he’s not happy. And guess what? The deacon’s fucking the evangelist!” 

And so began the cinematic experience that is “Bottoms”: an irreverent, unhinged movie about two best friends who lie their way into running a female fight club at their high school and make plenty of enemies along the way. Seriously, it would put a bad name on the entire queer community if it wasn’t so darn funny. 

The crux of the film is that high school seniors PJ — played by filmmaker Rachel Sennott — and Josie, can’t seem to find a date. It’s not just because they’re gay — rather, in their words — they’re “gay and untalented.” 

When the girls hit small-town celebrity quarterback, Jeff (Nicholas Galitzine), with their car (following the TikTok-famous line, “I’m sorry I looked at Mrs. Riley and lightly grazed her left tit”), they’re forced to explain themselves to the school principal.  

They were simply practicing for their female empowerment self defense club, they argue. 

What follows is a deranged scheme to get girls by forming an actual fight club and throwing them in the ring to beat the daylights out of one another. 

PJ and Josie claim they’ve been to juvie and the lie spreads like wildfire, making them instantly cool and popular in the eyes of teen girls who just want to defend themselves against predatory men. But what masquerades as a club for women to come together and punch out their trauma is actually a devious attempt to get close to the hot girls, Isabel (Havana Rose Liu) and Brittany (Kaia Jordan Gerber). 

Then come the bloody fight scenes set to Charli XCX tracks and the eventual friendship between the fight club members. 

One of the best things about “Bottoms” is that the entire thing is a caricature of American high school culture. Jeff the football player is universally worshiped and is simultaneously a big wuss. The school walls are plastered with his shirtless pictures. The “big game” is like a religious event. 

The whole film is just so inexplicably and wonderfully weird. There’s a kid who is always in a metal cage in the back of the classroom. The football team mimics the Last Supper at lunch.

But one of the best performances is that of Marshawn Lynch, who plays Mr. G, the fight club’s advisor and uninterested teacher of some unnamed subject. 

Mr. G is the deliverer of fabulous lines such as: “I’m confused right now on how you created a fucking fight club to get some cooch. And for what? Y’all don’t even know how to work that thing,” and “I knew women were evil.” 

Without giving away too much of the plot, I will say that the final fight scene is some of the most hilariously gruesome content I’ve ever seen. The club comes together for a final face-off against a rival football team, and there’s bombs, blood and dead football players. 

Sometimes I come across queer media and think, “Wow, this movie would be great for young gay kids trying to figure out their identity.” This is not one of those pieces of media.

It serves its own purpose: finally giving the queer, non-male-identifying community a blasphemous, dirty and silly movie where most of the characters are complete assholes. 

And shouldn’t we let queer girls be assholes every once in a while? 

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About the Contributors
Katie Langley, Editor-in-Chief
Amanda Riha, Design Editor

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