Review by Camden Ferrell
He’s All That is the most recent gender-swapped comedy, being a loose remake of the film She’s All That. This movie is from director Mark Waters, most known for his work on the teen comedy classic Mean Girls. This is a movie that at times feels tailor-made for the Tik Tok-era kids who will inevitably watch it, but it lacks any substance or redeemable qualities whatsoever.
Padgett is a beauty influencer who seemingly has her life figured out. However, after she has an embarrassing live fallout with her popstar boyfriend, her life gets shaken up. In order to redeem herself, she takes on a bet to take the most unpopular boy at school, Cameron, and turn him into a Prom King. This is a premise that is very similar to the movie on which this is based, so it’s nothing revolutionary, but it still has potential.
The original movie was mixed upon release but has found a comfortable niche since then. Even though this remake comes from the same writer, R. Lee Fleming Jr., it seems like this will not be met well by any audience. It lacks originality, and it is full of bland and static dialogue that ranges from dull to cringingly embarrassing. The characters have no development, and the script gives me no reason to be invested in the trials and tribulations of these high schoolers. It has so little to say, and it never justifies its existence.
The acting in this movie is forgettable at best. The movie is led by Tik Tok star Addison Rae in her first live-action film role. She is half-decent in some of the scenes based around her character’s actions as an influencer, probably because she is one herself. However, elsewhere, she is flat and isn’t able to demonstrate any kind of acting range. It’s a monotone performance that only has the slightest glimmers of chemistry with her co-star Tanner Buchanan. While he tries his best to play the mysterious and dreamy loner, it doesn’t work, and the rest of the cast follows suit in this mediocrity.
It’s a shame to see Waters make a movie as unoriginal as this one. Unlike Mean Girls, which has impressively remained a staple of pop culture, this is a movie that’s doomed to the depths of obscurity fairly soon. Rae’s following will probably keep it relevant for a short time, but I can’t imagine anything as shallow and unfunny as this movie persisting in the zeitgeist. The movie lacks any self-awareness and doesn’t elicit a single laugh or ounce of amusement.
He’s All That is a miserable teen-comedy that is equal parts cringe and monotony. It’s bland, unoriginal, and painfully devoid of laughs. Addison Rae’s leading performance is far from enjoyable, and the whole movie makes for a rather unpleasant 90 minutes.
He’s All That is available on Netflix August 27.