As any fan of the 2000 classic knows, Bring It On wasn't just a move about the Rancho Carne High School cheerleaders and their alarmingly catchy cheers, no. Bring It On was a lifestyle. By which I mean, Bring It On was the type of movie you watched on repeat. And paused. And rewound. Because how else were you going to learn the choreography or memorize the words to the opening cheer? Trick question. You weren't.
The almost 16 year old film has achieved the kind of cult status that only a select few movies from the '00s have been able to — especially those intended for a preteen or teenage audience. Because of its ability to remain timeless, and to hold a special place in your cheer heart after all these years, you might even say that Bring It On is both cute as hell and captain material. But I don't know, Aaron.
Besides being just straight up the best film about cheerleading to have ever existed, there are many reasons why Bring It On should be watched over and over again. Too many to count on just spirit fingers. But, for the sake of being succinct and sharp (you know, like a good cheer), here are 11 of those reasons.
1. It Had An All-Star Cast
Almost all of the Toros and Clovers went on to do some unforgettable work post Bring It On. Mostly Kirsten Dunst, who had a notable teenage rom-com career. But, also, Gabrielle Union, anyone? Eliza Dushku?
2. It Taught Honesty
The film doesn't really get started plot-wise until the Toros learn that they (at the hands of ex-captain Big Red) have been unintentionally stealing routines from the Clovers. Though most of the crew becomes reluctant to change, Torrence pushes everyone to have integrity about the fraud.
3. It Showed That You Didn't Have To Win
When the Toros took home second place at nationals, that spoke to how real life really works — not some Hollywood version of it. As in, you don't have to be number one to accomplish something.
4. But That You Should Work Hard For What You Want
That's not to say the Toros didn't work hard for that second spot. As Torrence reminds us, in order to be the best (or second best), you have to beat the best. And that means putting in the work.
5. It Sparked A Cheer Revolution
It seemed like once Bring It On came out and infiltrated the homes and minds of eager middle schoolers. Everyone wanted to be a cheerleader. Your friends. Your friends' friends. Even my aunt, at one point. Which was understandably pretty weird for all of us, but not the point.
6. The Spirit Stick Is Still Ridiculous, But In A Fun Way
See there's this thing called the Spirit Stick, and it can never, ever touch the ground...
7. The Cheers Were Memorable
And you knew them. All of them. Maybe you even used one or two out and about in the real world, subsequently stunning people with your rhyming capabilities and witticisms.
8. The One-Liners Can Still Be Used To This Day
In all honesty, I say "I got the door, Torr!" at least twice a week. Sometimes more. Quick thank you to my friends for being my friends.
9. Cliff And Torrance Were Unconventional
And I mean, pretty cute. The cheerleader meets the alternative/indie guy — who just so happens to be her new best friend's brother. She ends up not knowing who The Clash are, he writes her a song (on a cassette tape!), and, you know, the rest is Toro history. This kind of surprising romance wasn't totally new territory, but it was still a step up from the cheerleader-falls-for-the-football-guy trope.
10. Missy Was A Badass
This was her last resort, but, to me, Missy was Bring It On's first. If that makes sense. OK, it doesn't, but go with me. Bring It On wouldn't have been half the film it turned out to be without Missy's sardonic (but ultimately good-hearted) nature to balance things out.
11. The Ending Musical Montage Was The Actual best
It was so fine it blew my mind. It was also incredibly corny and cheesy and everything I — as a preteen person — wanted in an ending montage. Which is coincidentally the same thing I — as an adult person — still want.
There must be some Toros in the atmosphere because it's starting to feel a little cold in here, isn't it? Brrrrr.
Images: Universal Studios; Giphy (7)