The title of the book on which this movie is based is Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends and Other Realities of Adolescence. It just about sums up everything thats covered, but as far as movie titles go, Mean Girls is decidedly slicker.
Reunited with her Freaky Friday director, Mark S Waters, Lindsay Lohan plays Cady Heron, who, as the film opens is being farewelled by her tearful parents (Ana Gasteyer and Neil Flynn) as she leaves for her first day of school! Although shes 16, Cady has never actually attended a real school before and has been home educated in Africa where her parents have worked as anthropologists. Well versed in the ways of the animal world, Cady is about to venture into another kind of jungle.
After an embarrassing introduction to a very unfriendly class, Cady is befriended by sharp-tongued goth, Janis Ian (Lizzy Caplan) and Damian (Daniel Franzese) her too gay to function best friend, who quickly point out the many student factions that divide up the school. They warn her to steer clear especially of The Plastics comprising bitchy campus queen, Regina George (Rachel McAdams) and her two vacuous toadies and followers of fashion, Gretchen (Lacey Chabert) and Karen (Amanda Seyfried).
When Regina spies Cady in the school cafeteria she invites her to join the group - as long as she follows their strict rules of style and dress, which decree, for example, that a pony tail must be worn only once a week! The intelligent down-to-earth Cady wants no part of this superficial sorority, but Janis - who has long held a grudge against Regina - thinks its the ideal opportunity for Cady to spy on The Plastics and bring the queen bee and her disciples down to size.
Cady reluctantly becomes a Plastic even though she is opposed to the whole concept of it. At the same time, she begins to enjoy her new and growing popularity, but when she falls for Reginas ex-boyfriend, Aaron (Jonathan Bennett) Cady gets a taste of her poisonous and manipulative ways.
Cady begins to create dissent within The Plastics and starts feeding Regina so-called health bars, which actually pile on the pounds, but while sabotaging the group, she also becomes exactly the kind of person the Plastics represent. Every now and then a touch of black comedy surfaces in Mean Girls, giving it a welcome and unexpected edge as it makes some very sharp - and funny - observations.