By Michael Sauter
December 17, 1999 at 05:00 AM EST

Like the 1975 sleeper Smile — but broader and more black-humored — this mockumentary satirizes teen beauty pageants, finding a lot to lampoon. The stupid people tricks in the ”talent” contest are campy fun (especially Denise Richards’ tone-deaf song-and-dance with a life-size crucifix). Surprisingly less effective, though, are Alley and Barkin as standard-issue stage mothers — one nouveau riche, one trailer trash — whose shticks seem too familiar to be funny anymore. Reel Goodies (0:50) Bad girl Richards and good girl Kirsten Dunst engage in that time-honored competition: the backstage catfight. The Last Detail Screenwriter Lona Williams is a former beauty pageant contestant. B

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