Girlfight (2000)

(In theaters, October 2000) A “tale from the ‘hood” crossed with a sports drama with a dollop of romance. (Plus a coming-of-age story. In some ways, it’s kind of a Fight Club for girls.) Though the plot is conventional, it’s hard not to be impressed by newcomer Michelle Rodriguez, who shines brightly as the aggressive protagonist. (“I love you!” THWAP!) The direction is surprisingly assured, with a neat white-flash trick during the fight scenes. Maybe a bit too contrived to be entirely believable. The kind of film that cheats no one and delivers what’s promised.

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