Directed By: Robert Iscove
Written By: R. Lee Flemming Jr.
Cinematography: Francis Kenny
Editor: Casey O. Rohrs
Cast: Freddie Prinze Jr., Rachel Leigh Cook, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe, Paul Walker, Dule Hill, Tamara Mello, Gabrielle Union, Matthew Lillard, Kevin Pollak, Anna Paquin, Kieran Culkin, Elden Henson, Usher Raymond, Kimberly “Lil’ Kim” Jones, Clea Duvall, Debbi Morgan, Tim Matheson, Chris Owen, Ashlee Levitch, Vanessa Lee Chester, Carlos Jacott, Alexis Arquette, Katherine Towne, Brandon Mychel Smith, Milo Ventimiglia, Sara Rivas, Flex Alexander
A high school jock makes a bet that he can turn an unattractive girl into the school’s prom queen.
An update or a modern retelling if Pygmalion set in contemporary high school. This movie feels familiar but manages to rise above the material to be a cute teen high school movie even with the long in the tooth cast. That feels like a preview for young girls of what they hope their first true romance will be like.
For a certain generation this is their High School Movie the fairy tale that is their PRETTY IN PINK. Just as for another HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL: THE MOVIE is theirs.
The film seems a bit low budget or looks that way then most high school movie. As it constantly feels thrifty and eclectic how the film and it’s backgrounds and wardrobe all fit together.
The film ended up being a surprise hit. Though proved to be the last of the big successful movie roles for it’s lead stars. With the exception of Paul Walker and Gabrielle Union.
The film asks a bit much in presenting the cliche of the nerdy, artistic girl with glasses. Is secretly a knockout who only needs a makeover and to take her glasses off to show it.
Does play with and shape a lot of fads. Even having singer usher in a small role as the school’s resident DJ has no real reasoning except to introduce a choreographed dance sequence at the prom. That seemed impressive when watching it at the time, but now seems badly staged and nothing to write home about.
It seems like they wanted to cast all the popular stars at the time that they could. Who still looked like teenagers. after all they have Oscar winner Anna Paquin and Lil’ Kim in the movie. Rachel Leigh cook deserved more films to star in. Even if this became one of her more popular memorable roles other than JOSIE & THE PUSSYCATS. She has a likeable and unpredictable screen presence.
This more Helped start the next teen movie romantic comedy renaissance that played itself out and ended soon after. –The film is rather basic. Though seemingly perfect for a teenage view of love. As once you get older you see and experience more. Where as this film and it’s story feel more storybook as based on a Classic and feels like a more memorable romantic comedy film. Though with it being based on Pygmalion this an other teen films loosely based on classic literature. It taught a generation of Kids the classics without them Realizing it to the shock of Their english teachers.
Jodi lyn O’Keefe even though having a more supporting role. Is the films all star here playing the first of many female cliche villainous beautiful unattainable popular girls. Who throughout shows how awful and vain she is, but does it in increasingly hilarious ways and throws herself into any physical humor that is asked for. She does the same thing even better in the disappointing movie WHATEVER IT TAKES.
The Same joys just updated for the next generation. As essentially the same story only different situations and ways to tell the tale. Where all the characters are essentially universal for the audience to identify with. –The film promotes a clean message, image and fun for all.
Which is like a television procedural. Where it is the same show but with different cases and the same outcome. This just happens to play more romantic. So like a favorite this might be considered one of the new essentials in the teen romantic comedy Renaissance. I remember watching this movie a lot when working at a movies theater in my early 20’s. A lot of the staff including me rewatched this film. Which might be why this Film is always a guilty pleasure to me. That upon rewatching doesn’t feel as strong or as big but Is rewatchable. For what works and what doesn’t.
The film takes some big leaps but has a charm of it’s own. Though could easily be ridiculed. As it never feels serious and knows what is is and plays all the right notes.
Loved through and Through grew up on in the 1980’s teen movies. So when this next renaissance came around. (there were still teen films here and therefore the years but not too many theatrically not as good enough to be box office hits nor popular enough to start studios wanting to put out more) Was skeptical at first but eventually won over by a few of them even as I was out of my teens when I watched them. I was close enough at least for the casts real ages. This film deserves a spot in the teen movie hall of fame.
This was Freddie Prinze Jr’s Best role, Actually