By Rohail Spear || Arts and Leisure Editor
He’s All That is a glorious remake of the classic movie She’s All That. Witty humor, shocking plot twists, and two excellent leads drive what should have been an average movie to be a sensational masterpiece that comments on what really matters in life.
The movie follows Padgett Sawyer (Addison Rae), a social media influencer who begins to lose followers after a viral video depicts Padgett yelling at her boyfriend, who cheated on her. To regain her followers, Padgett decides to befriend Cameron Kweller (Tanner Buchanan), an antisocial emo, and win prom king and queen as a couple. The movie really picks up when [spoiler alert] you realize she’s falling for him—it was completely unexpected. Oh, and there was also the part where Padgett was nicknamed “Bubble Girl” because of a bubble of snot that blew up in her nose. Ingenious.
When I first heard that Addison Rae had TikToked her way into becoming the lead in a Netflix movie, I had my doubts. Within the first few minutes, however, my doubts had disappeared as fast as Addison’s eyebags when she applied that wax paper compress thing in the opening scene. The girl can act. Not only can she memorize her lines flawlessly, but her ability to cry in every other scene deserves recognition. Her face routinely transforms from composed and pretty into a web of tear-stricken mascara—her range of emotions is astounding. She can be happy and sad and angry.
Although the movie reflects current times of social media and influencers, wisdom as old as the Earth itself flows out of some of these characters. “I hate things that suck,” Cameron declares at one point. His sister, Brin, explains to Padgett, “He’s my brother. Just by blood though.” Padgett “effing love[s] Legoland,” and one of Padgett’s friends substitutes the word “schedule” for “sched,” as we all do.
He’s All That manages to encapsulate themes such as popularity, shallowness, and true values all in 90 minutes. By the end of the movie, Padgett has rejected the offer of Prom Queen (thereby symbolically rejecting her influencer status) and meets Cameron outside of the school. The movie ends with the two riding horses together. I wouldn’t be surprised if the film was nominated for an Oscar purely based on its originality and creativity. It was the perfect way to spend an hour and a half of my day, and I don’t regret any of it.
Sophomore Rohail Spear is the Arts and Leisure Editor. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.