Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Sweet Valley University Thriller Edition: Running for Her Life
This book is incredibly ridiculous so I’ll have to condense it down some. Basically Liz is the best writer in the world and this book totally confirms it. Jessica is completely obsessed with movie star Julia Reynolds, who dies in an accident and the police believe that it’s suicide. Liz’s new journalism assignment involves finding a newspaper article and writing a different slant on it. She locks herself in the dorm room for two days and writes an article saying that the movie production company actually killed Julia and made it look like a suicide, which of course it was.
The professor is so impressed that she sends it to a friend who works for a major newspaper and the friend decides to run the story. The professor gets a package, which turns out to be a mail bomb. She’s killed and Liz barely escapes. Then the friend is also killed and some guy shoots at Jessica, thinking she’s Liz. The twins then go on the run.
Matt is another actor who was engaged to Julia and he hears about the article and tracks the twins down. They all work together to try and find the killer, who’s also tracking them. He worries that another actress Candace might be next because she also left the studio and gets Jess on set to warn her. Jess gets a walk-on role in the movie, but is fired when Candace hates her and Candace later turns up dead.
Matt gets a call from a guy who works for the studio, but when they go to meet him, he’s already dead. His widow gives them his safety deposit key. Conveniently the guy wrote down all the details and left it behind. Apparently the studio was nearly bankrupt because a bunch of actors left them. They have one more person on the list and plan to kill him at the Academy Awards.
Luckily the award show wants to give Julia a special Oscar and invited Matt to the show. Apparently they give special awards to people who star in a bunch of crappy action movies like Julia did. He asks Jessica to go with him and gives her the special dress Julia bought for the day when she’d win an Oscar. Of course he’s in love with Jessica and wants to go with her.
Liz gets a call from an FBI agent who wants to meet with her and she doesn’t tell anyone. The real FBI agent was killed and the killer grabs Liz at the meeting. Luckily Tom went to the agent’s hotel room and knew where he was meeting Liz so he shows up and saves the day.
Jess and Matt go to the Oscars and she acts like she’s the big star and Matt’s just a lackey. The actor the studio wants dead wins the best supporting actor award and the killer jumps out, but Liz throws herself in front of him and saves him. The cops show up and naturally believe them, even though they don’t really have any proof.
We then jump to a few days later when Matt tells Jessica that he’s leaving town. He plans to give up acting for awhile and travel Europe. She gets kind of pissy because he’s leaving her, but then decides that she needs to focus on her acting career. He tells her that someday she’ll meet her own Matt and find an actor who supports her and her career before riding off into the sunset.
I think this book is a rip-off of some movie from the 1960s when the studios worked different. Basically the book says that actors have exclusive contracts with a specific studio, even though that’s not really true anymore, unless you work for Disney. Can you imagine is someone told George Clooney that he could only work with one studio? A bunch of others would revolt.
The basic premise of the book is that the studio was losing money because actors kept making deals and then leaving. Julie dropped out of an action movie and Candace dropped out of a romantic comedy. If the studio lost one more star, it would mean losing another movie and then going bankrupt. Plus the head of the studio had a gambling problem and kept losing money because he was dipping into funds. I swear I’ve seen this movie before though…