It returns!!!!!!! It is that time of year once again! The time when the red roses and box of chocolates are at the top of our minds as we look at that lovely time of saccharine sweet romance that is the month of February and Valentine’s Day. With that in mind, I decided to return Cheesy Romance Month to my site! This month I will have a look at four of the cheesiest, goofiest, and most all around dorky comedies that I could conjure out of the depth of our culture. These Romantic Comedies will range from enjoyable fun to absolute mind numbing crap, but at least we will be on this adventure together… And I will be in the most amount of pain so that you don’t have to suffer as I do. With that in mind, let’s get started with one of the most 90’s movies in existence, She’s All That.
This was a movie that was on my list for Cheesy Romance Month last February, but it barely missed the cut after Just Go With It made me want to throw myself out of a window. After that, I just couldn’t handle another crappy romance. I decided to have a look at it again for the start of this Cheesy Romance Month with the hopes that maybe it wasn’t as bad as the first time I had to sit through it… Nope… Nope it is still terrible. Good to know when a movie meets my expectations for better or for worse. Let it be known going into this review that this is without a doubt one of the worst romantic comedies that has ever been made. Horrible acting, horrible writing, and a horrible premise are just a few things that I could say about this festering pile of garbage. So… My opinion isn’t very high.
She’s All That is the story of two teenagers, the horrifically named Zack Siler (Freddie Prinze Jr.) and Laney Boggs (Rachel Leigh Cook). Zack is the most popular guy in high school. After his vapid girlfriend Taylor (Jodi Lyn O’Keefe) dumps him for a star from the Real World (played by mugging annoyance Matthew Lillard), Zack takes it upon himself to not let this get him down claiming that he can replace Taylor with any girl. His good friend Dean (Paul Walker) challenges him to a bet that he needs to take the nerdiest, most unappealing girl, and make her into the Prom Queen which is in six weeks. Of course Laney is the unfortunate selection for this horrific objectified bet so it is up to Zack to remove all the weird quirks that make Laney unique like her love for painting and her wearing of glasses and boil her down into an easily digestible prom queen so that she can conform to the rest of society. For anyone who knows me can see why I am not a fan.
This is a minor subject so I won’t harp on it for very long, but man is this movie 90’s. Whenever it comes to movies that first pop into people’s heads when they talk about the 90’s this movie is listed with Space Jam, You’ve Got Mail, and American History X as the most 90’s movies to exist.
Even the title screams 90’s. “Yeah! She is all that and a bag of chips!” It couldn’t get more 90’s unless Bart Simpson skateboarded onto the cover telling me to not lay a finger on his Butterfinger. The setting, the story, the forced references, and just about everything else you can think of makes this movie impossible to relate to by anyone who did not grow up in that decade. Sometimes this is a good thing as it adds some nostalgia and even becomes a sort of reference to the culture of that decade. But in other cases such as this, it only serves to alienate anyone who attempts to watch the movie another time.
So the running joke of this movie is that Rachel Leigh Cook is this unattractive nerdy girl… That is kind of a tough sell. I’m sorry, but Rachel Leigh Cook just isn’t the best for this part. I’m not advocating for some ugly looking actress, but if you are going to try to turn the ugly duckling into the swan, you need to make sure that the ugly duckling at least has some defects. The only difference between Laney’s appearance before and after is her hair isn’t in a ponytail, she isn’t wearing glasses, and she is wearing a dress. THAT IS IT!
It would be okay if this was the story of attempting to bring someone out of their shell. I despise the premise but it would work with the context of the movie. But that isn’t what happens. They constantly state that Laney is one of the ugliest most hideous creatures to walk the earth, talk about a tough sell!
I do not intend to come across as hypocritical here, but if this is the kind of movie that you want to make, then you need to have either the actress or the make up applied to sell which this just isn’t the case for this vapid train wreck.
This is not helped by the fact that I am not a fan of Freddie Prinze Jr., Matthew Lillard, or Rachel Leigh Cook… But yeah the acting is terrible across the board. I feel like this movie was made specifically for the purpose to test my patience when it comes to watching actors that I do not like on-screen because I would rather drink bleach then watch these people act in one movie together.
Matthew Lillard is more of a personal thing for me as I have never liked his mugging face on camera. With the exception of movies like Thirteen Ghosts he has always rubbed me the wrong way. Luckily Lillard isn’t in the film that much to test my patience. But man does he make the scenes when he is on-screen difficult to watch. He is just so obnoxious that it takes me out of the movie. Sure his character is supposed to be obnoxious, but when it is so obnoxious that it makes me want to turn off the movie, then you are doing your job too damn well.
Then we have our leads, Freddie Prinze Jr. and Rachel Leigh Cook. Both of them just do not have any personality at all. Cook’s character has some when she is actually being herself, but once the ‘transformation’ happens it zaps all personality out of her character. Freddie Prinze Jr on the other hand has absolutely zero personality from start to finish. He just simply ‘reacts’ to moments and not in a way that seems like a character on the screen. Just a sort of resounding meh as it he would rather be anywhere else then working on that film.
Terrible Message, Attacks Individuality, and Bad Morals
Let this movie be a lesson to everyone. In order to be accepted you need to conform to societies norms. You will be judged solely on your looks and social graces and intelligence and creativity need to be crushed in order to appease the world. That is this movie’s message! It isn’t about a person trying to help someone else learn how to socialize or become a better person. It is about someone forcing another person to be just like everyone else and expecting gratitude for doing so. Laney Boggs did not show any inclination that she was unhappy in her life or that she enjoyed being a nerdy and artistic person. She became the target of a shallow bet by two assholes who said they could make her the prom queen.
This movie is build on horrific messages and bad morals that what you need most in life is to conform to other people’s standards instead of being accepted for who you are. I hate it, I hate the message this movie is attempting to send, I hate the characters in it, and I cannot stand the fact that someone made money off of this movie.
This movie is pure garbage. Some of the worst garbage I have ever seen when it comes to movies. The acting is bad, the writing is terrible, the premise is misogynistic, and the movie has aged like ten week old milk. Any positives that I can think of are quickly killed by the overwhelming negatives which is why I give it my lowest score possible.
Final Score 0/5
Well we started off Cheesy Romance Month with quite a bang and a serious headache on my account. Come back Tuesday for another review from me, Thursday for a new release, and this Saturday for the return of The Nerdiest Talk Show on Earth.