A teen movie, but one that actually shows what jerks high school kids are, most of the time. It's Backstreet Boys soundtrack undersells it; it's actually quite intelligent and entertaining, when it's not being completely predictable.With lumps of dog crap like "She's All That" and "10 Things I Hate About You" crowding our movie screens, it's easy to harken back to the glory days of John Hughes movies (No, NOT "Baby's Day Out") and remark, "They just don't make 'em like they used to. Where's my whiskey? Grandpa needs his medicine!" But what loveable ol' Grandpa fails to realize (aside from the fact that Grandma poisoned the whiskey on account of his messing around with that hussy Agnes next door) is that at the same time that Hughes was producing his classics, there was plenty of teen crap that we don't remember. Look at a video store shelf once in a while; "Mischief", "Meatballs 2", "Tomboy", "Hot Dog: The Movie", "We're Teens; Let's Us Have Some Sex" - all these movies were out the same time as "The Breakfast Club" and "Pretty in Pink". My point? There's always been good teen movies and lousy-ass teen movies. This is one of the good ones. Most of the time.
The exciting tale: Good-looking boy (Adrian Grenier)gets dumped by his girlfriend. Good-looking girl (Melissa Joan Hart) loses out on dating hunky basketball player. Big dance coming up. Let's go together, make the people we really want jealous, and feel absolutely no attraction towards each other. Should be a perfect plan.
The movie manages to move past its rather old plot by showing high school accurately; that is, as a seething cauldron of hellfire. Good-looking boy is one of the "misfits" (who boo at pep rallies and don't attend school dances) while good-looking girl is on the yearbook committee. The movie shows how difficult it is to escape the cliques that kids are lumped into almost immediately upon entry into high school, no matter how hard we try. One of the most sympathetic characters is "Designated Dave", a boy so eager to be accepted by the popular kids that he'll leave his friends so he can drive a drunken popular kid home. His growing resentment as good-looking boy moves into the popular crowd with little to no effort was well-portrayed.
There are few surprises in this movie; although the scene with good-looking girl and her father in the hot air balloon was very well done, and the Designated Dave storyline ends nicely - it has a Ducky in "Pretty in Pink" feeling to it. We know that they're going to fall in love, yeah, but it's nice to watch and it kills time. And it shows that the popular boys are drunken jerks and date rapists and that the good-looking girls should date nerds and weirdoes, which should make all us high school geeks happy, because dammit - we've known it for years.See this movie if you can still remember the names of at least 5 people who picked on you in high school. It's like "Welcome to the Dollhouse" starring Jennifer Love Hewitt.