Somewhere inside Garry Marshall’s latest directorial effort, Georgia Rule, there is a very good movie. However, as the film currently exists, it is nothing above average. Starring Lindsay Lohan, Jane Fonda, and Felicity Huffman, the film focuses on three generations of women in the same family. They are all stubborn and pig-headed in their own way, but only two of the three, Georgia (Fonda) and Lilly (Huffman), have redeemable qualities. Lohan’s Rachel is wholly unlikable and unforgivable, no matter what difficulties she had to suffer through as a child. Problematically, it is Lohan’s character that is at the center of the film.
From the very first scene in the film - Rachel ranting and raving while walking next to her mother’s car as her mom is driving - Rachel rubs the audience the wrong way. To some extent this is the goal of the filmmakers, as Lilly is bringing Rachel from their home in San Francisco to Idaho to live with Georgia for the summer. Rachel is a classic troubled child: disobeying her mother and stepfather, doing drugs, drinking, and acting out in any way that might provoke a response from her mother.
As the film progresses, the audience watches Rachel say and do shocking things simply out of a need for attention. Eventually, she attempts to hurt her boss for the summer, Simon (Dermot Mulroney), who is trying to get over the loss of his wife and son and is kind of sulky, by telling him that she was molested by her stepfather, Arnold (Cary Elwes).
It is Rachel’s belief that by springing this on him he will realize that he’s not the only one with problems in his life and therefore suck it up (she’s not the brightest girl). Simon, feeling it his responsibility to tell her family, informs Georgia about Rachel’s confession. Rachel instantly claims that she was lying and only wanted to upset Simon. Georgia calls Lilly, who had returned to San Francisco, and Lilly immediately heads back to Idaho.