Reviewer's grade: C
For the first Nancy Drew movie on the big screen in nearly 70 years, writer/director Andrew Fleming and co-writer Tiffany Paulsen decide to give the spunky teen sleuth the "Brady Bunch Movie" treatment. Nancy (Emma Roberts) is an anachronism, a goody-goody with a penchant for penny loafers and taffy pulls. So when she and her widower father (Tate Donovan) rent a rundown mansion in Los Angeles, our plucky protagonist endures the ridicule of the mean girls at her new high school.
Thankfully, there is a murder mystery for Nancy to solve. Not so thankfully, she does so with the help of an insufferably obnoxious 12-year-old named Corky (Josh Flitter). Fleming made a great movie once about teenaged girls, the 1999 Watergate flick (and misleadingly titled) "Dick."
"Nancy Drew" could have used some of the snappy humor of that earlier motion picture. Instead, we get a muddle that is too unfunny for a comedy and too dull for a whodunit. PG