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Bottoms is Raunchy Lesbian High School Fun That We All Need

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at San Francisco chapter.

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Emma Seligman’s directorial debut, Shiva Baby, was a hit in the indie circuit, winning the John Cassavetes Award at the 2022 Film Independent Spirit Awards, and creating high expectations for her next film. Written by Seligman and Shiva Baby star, Rachel Sennott, Bottoms is that next film and it lives up to every expectation. 

Bottoms is a high school comedy about students PJ and Josie, who create a fight club at their school in order to hook up with cheerleaders. With a concept as chaotic as that and a tagline that says, “a movie about empowering women (the hot ones)”, Bottoms immediately lets you know what it is: an absurd movie full of jokes that is not serious in any way, but embraces that wholeheartedly. 

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To talk seriously about something so genuinely unserious feels wrong, but it must be done. Bottoms was easily my most anticipated film of the year. In a year packed with blockbusters such as Barbie and Oppenheimer, what’s so special about this little indie film? Emma Seligman and her cast succeed at creating a movie for an audience that is largely disregarded. She not only represents queer women (lesbians specifically), but she makes them funny, chaotic, and messy like any other person can be. Seligman draws in an audience with that, and then hits everyone’s sense of nostalgia by creating a love letter and a satire to early 2000’s coming of age high school comedies. 

The early 2000’s was a time full of hilarious films like Mean Girls and Superbad and Bottoms harnesses that energy, turning it into something new and, most importantly, gay. It utilizes every single trope from that time from the hilarious, air headed football player, to the world in which classes are practically nonexistent unless they forward the plot, to final act montages full of Avril Lavigne and other pop-punk music. That may sound overwhelming, but Bottoms does this in a way that makes it hilarious and absurd while still remaining charming and genuine. For a movie with so much going on, Seligman’s ability to keep it grounded and full of heart is impressive. 

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The film is only strengthened and grounded further by its stellar cast. Rachel Sennott helped write and stars in it alongside Ayo Edebiri, who is taking Hollywood by storm in FX’s The Bear, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, and more. They perfectly capture the roles of PJ and Josie, respectively, who are best friends with nearly opposite personalities. Their chemistry is palpable, likely due to Sennott and Edebiri’s friendship since their improv days in college. The supporting cast includes Ruby Cruz, Kaia Gerber, and Nicholas Galitzine, who embody their roles and help create an absurd high school reality that feels real. The standout performance is Havana Rose Liu as Isabel, who has a scene in a diner that you won’t forget (you’ll know it when you see it).  

Bottoms is still in theaters (though it may not be for much longer), so see it while you can. There’s nothing more special than seeing it in a theater full of people laughing and cheering at all the right moments. However, it also released on VOD on September 22nd, providing even more opportunity to watch it. And when you do watch it, don’t forget to stick around for the blooper reel (because of course there is one, we’re in the 2000’s again)! 

Marisa Pendola

San Francisco '25

Hey everyone! I'm Marisa and I'm an assistant editor for HerCampus at SFSU. I'm a Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts major and my career goals include all things writing in the entertainment industry. I'm so excited to write with HerCampus while working alongside other talented womxn!