IT'S A BOY GIRL THING: DVD
High schoolers Woody Deane (Kevin Zegers) and Nell Bedworth (Samaire Armstrong) are like chalk and cheese. He is rough and loves football; she is prudish and loves Shakespeare. They live next door to each other and are sworn enemies. During a school museum visit, they argue in front of a statue of the ancient Aztec god of sorcery and the next morning, find they have swapped bodies. In their switched identities, Woody and Nell set out to destroy the other's high school reputation, but find more than they bargain for.
Review by Louise Keller:
Strangely enough, it isn't the lack of originality in this body switch comedy that irritated me most, it is that I didn't believe any of it. The success of films like Big (Tom Hanks, 1988), Dating The Enemy (Guy Pearce, Claudia Karvan, 1996) and Freaky Friday (Jamie Lee Curtis, Lindsay Lohan, 2003) lies in the characterisations and our ability to suspend disbelief for long enough to enjoy the ride.
Here, Woody (Kevin Zegers) and Nell (Samaire Armstrong) are next door neighbours who can't stand one another. He plays his hip hop music loudly with his bedroom window open; she can't concentrate on the Romeo and Juliet play she is rehearsing. The script is predictable and in the initial scenes we get an idea of how different the two neighbouring families are, and how differently they communicate. Then there's the school museum excursion in which (horror of horrors) they are paired together. That's when it happens, as they yell at each other before the god of sorcery. The dialogue is downright trite. 'We need to talk', he tells her, when they wake up to find themselves in each other's body. 'This cannot happen,'; 'You'd better figure how I'm going to get my damn body back; 'Maybe it's just like one of those 24 hour things.' And then there are all those predictable erection, breast, underwear jokes as both tries to give the other a taste of his/her own medicine.
The most entertaining part of the film is as Woody and Nell teach each other to use their new bodies and strengths in a positive way. There are sleepovers with Brazilian bikini waxes, and drinking binges with the boys. She (he) teaches him (her) how to toss a football; he (she) explains the meaning of Shakespeare. By losing their inhibitions, they learn and begin to respect each other. Kevin Zegers makes the most of Woody, but Samaire Armstrong is less convincing. Soppy is the word that comes to mind, as the ending draws near.
Published February 28, 2008
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IT'S A BOY GIRL THING: DVD (M)
CAST: Samaire Armstrong, Kevin Zegers, Emily Hampshire, Libby Adams,
PRODUCER: David Furnish, Martin Katz, Steve Hamilton Shaw
DIRECTOR: Nick Hurran
SCRIPT: Geoff Deane
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Steve Danyluk
EDITOR: John Richards
MUSIC: Christian Henson
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Craig Lathrop
RUNNING TIME: 90 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Icon
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: 2007
PRESENTATION: 2.35:1 Anamorphic widescreen
SPECIAL FEATURES: The Making Of Featurette, Theatrical Trailer, Boy/Girl Quiz, History of the Statue, Cast Biographies
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Icon Film Distribution
DVD RELEASE: January 9, 2008 (rental); April 9, 2008 (Retail)