Hot Chick

Movie Review by Neil Ryan

Starring: Rob Schneider, Rachel McAdams, Anna Faris, Andrew Keegan, Matthew Lawrence
Director: Tom Brady

Jessica (Rachel McAdams) is young, attractive, well off, and used to getting her own way. She’s the self-proclaimed most popular girl in high school and has a trio of acolytes ready to squeal approval at her every move. So in the Karmic scheme of things she’s just ripe for a fall and, sure enough, when she crosses paths with low-life criminal Clive (Rob Schneider) a ropey plot device, sorry, ancient curse causes these polar opposites to swap bodies.

Problems abound for Jessica. As well as the struggle to hide her new look from her parents, there’s her starring role in the imminent cheerleader contest, and she is supposed to be accompanying her boyfriend to the upcoming prom night. Just what is a girl-man to do? Meanwhile, Clive is putting his new body to good use: luring libidinous men into alleyways to mug them, and getting a job at a strip club. Thus confusion reigns amidst a rash of penis, homosexual, and urination jokes.

There have been a slew of body-swap comedies from Hollywood in the past fifteen years and THE HOT CHICK has nothing new to offer the sub-genre. The slapstick is heavy-handed and unfunny, and the racial and sexual stereotyping is lazy in the extreme. However, there are some funny lines, Adam Sandler appears in a surprisingly low-key cameo, and the young cast is bright and energetic. But the decision to pay lip-service to a positive, life-affirming message is a mistake: banal speeches about everyone being beautiful and, hey, it’s what’s on the inside of a person that matters are meaningless in the context of a teen gross-out comedy, especially when they are delivered by a uniformly gorgeous ensemble.

3 out of 6 stars

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