WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD.
“He’s All That”, the gender-bent remake of the 1999 romantic comedy “She’s All That”, is possibly the worst Netflix original you’ll ever watch—and that’s putting it lightly.
Netflix has produced some pretty addicting, binge-worthy original shows and movies over the years. So how was the company able to create such a mess of a movie in the midst of hundreds of great productions?
TikTok star Addison Rae plays the main character, Padgett Sawyer, in her debut movie. Padgett is a high-school beauty influencer who has a meltdown on her Instagram Live when she discovers her boyfriend, Jordan Van Draanen, played by Peyton Meyer, is cheating on her.
In order to rebuild her social media career, the high-school beauty expert must prove herself to be the miracle worker she claims to be so she can earn back her sponsorships for college money. The only way to do that is to take up a bet to turn the school’s biggest outcast, Cameron Kweller, played by Tanner Buchanan, and turn him into the next prom king.
Long story short, the popular girl falls for the loser boy.
This predictable plot is overused with teeny-bopper movies, where the popular student falls for the nerdy outcast. It’s tiresome as-is; however, the addition of monotone acting, cheesy lines and cringe-worthy chemistry felt like trying to drink chunky, rancid milk.
Sure, Rae had a few good acting scenes, but anytime her character needed to show any emotions, it was like listening to nails grate a chalkboard. Rae’s dry personality ruined any potential for depth her character could’ve had. Even the love-interest between the main characters was yawn-worthy because of the absence of connection between Padgett and Cameron.
It was more interesting to watch Quinn, Padgett’s best friend played by Myra Molloy, go to prom with Nisha, Cameron’s best friend played by Annie Jacob, than to watch the forced romance between the main characters.
That’s not to say it was all Rae’s fault that the movie was a flop. There were a lot of cheesy lines that Netflix really didn’t need to include, not to mention the dance battle at the end.
Sure, the movie is supposed to be a comedy. It’s painfully obvious that they tried their best, but the seriousness of the dance battle at the prom surely gave the audience a headache. It had nothing to do with the movie plot whatsoever, and it felt like a non-subtle way of advertising the cast’s dancing abilities.
The only good part about the movie was the emotional connection between the Kweller siblings at the end in their talk about their mother’s death, one of the only scenes with real actors and raw emotions. Even the small parts that included the return of two of the original cast members, Rachael Leigh Cook and Matthew Lillard, were better than any of the scenes with the main cast.
One of the best scenes in the movie was the “bet” scene. The emotion that Buchanan portrays in his scene of realizing Padgett’s interest in him was all a bet, is almost as gripping as the original. The dropping of the F-bomb, similar to Cook’s in “She’s All That”, is capturing and heartbreaking in both movies. The look of betrayal sitting on the faces of the outcasts as they wonder how they could’ve missed all the signs of truth is a sad, but realistic scene with this typical teen trope.
The soundtrack wasn’t too bad either, with lots of popular TikTok songs in the movie’s mix. However, the remix of “Kiss Me” by Cyn, was not a very good parallel song to the better, original piece, “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer.
And the most inappropriate part of it all was the consequence of Padgett losing the bet. She gets a tattoo that says “loser”.
What were the writers thinking?
Freddie Prinze Jr’s challenge after losing the bet in the original movie was not only funnier, but way more light-hearted than a permanent mark on one’s body. Walking through your graduation naked is an iconic moment that anyone who’s seen “She’s All That” will not forget anytime soon, in a hilarious way.
Even though there were a small handful of good scenes, the bad far outweighs them, unfortunately. Original fans of the “She’s All That” film were not only disappointed by the outcome of the remake, but also shocked by how much “He’s All That” ruined the image of the original movie as well.
Netflix has produced more than “1,500 original titles” since 2013, so fans are beginning to wonder where the production company went wrong with “He’s All That”.
Jaedyn Young can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @jaedyn_young3.