‘He’s All That’: Why is Netflix remaking and ruining an iconic rom-com?
This August, Netflix will be dropping their remake of the hit 1999 teenage-comedy, She’s All That, which will see director Mark Waters at the helm, who’s perhaps best known for directing the 2004 cult classic Mean Girls. He’s All That will star Cobra Kai’s Tanner Buchanan, TikTok icon Addison Rae, as well as Peyton Meyer, Madison Pettis, Kourtney Kardashian, and original She’s All That star Rachael Leigh Cook. But is it necessary?
The original film, which inserted itself in a successful string of late 1990s to early 2000s teenage comedies, was a launching pad for many of the film’s young actors, including Freddie Prinze Jr., Matthew Lillard, Anna Paquin, Gabrielle Union, Rachael Leigh Cook, and the late Paul Walker. Of course, this film joins a slew of hit comedies of that era which included the likes of American Pie, 10 Things I Hate About You, and Bring It On.
While not certain, we’re almost certain that He’s All That will be a classic departure from the original film that will see Netflix do their Netflix s#!+, like take a fun plot and mix it up to incorporate today’s teen angst such as bullying & suicide. Hopefully not, but all we can do is cross our fingers in hopes that this remake, which frankly is retelling a story that was only a “B-” level plot, will not let us down as Netflix tends to do.
She’s All That
The original She’s All That came out in January 1999 and was directed by Robert Iscove, known for his work on both this film and 2000’s Boys And Girls. Iscove was also damned to hell for his work on 2002’s From Justin to Kelly, starring American Idol season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson and runner-up Justin Guarini.
The film told the story of high school hottie Zach (Prinze Jr.), the envy of his friends. But his popularity declines quickly when his prized girlfriend, Taylor, leaves him for sleazy reality-television star Brock Hudson. Desperate to revive his fading reputation, Zach agrees to an impossible bet, receiving six weeks to gain the trust of nerdy outcast Laney (Leigh Cook) and help her to become the school’s next prom queen.
The film was famously spoofed in the 2001 comedy Not Another Teen Movie, which made fun of popular teen films such as The Breakfast Club, Varsity Blues, Pretty in Pink, as well as many other popular teen films of that era. This film starred Chris Evans, Chyler Leigh, Jaime Pressly, Lacey Chabert, and Eric Christian Olsen. It would appear as if we’ve seen enough incarnations of She’s All That, right? Wrong . . .
He’s All That
The upcoming remake of He’s All That, which has yet to release a full trailer, did release a few clips as part of Netflix’s “coming soon” reel, which dropped on Youtube on Tuesday morning. The film, by the five seconds we could actually judge, did seem to capture the teenage spirit that made those late 1990s teen movies so much fun; pool parties, hookups, drama, amazing soundtracks. But can this upcoming remake succeed?
Well, the first major red flag is that the film stars, well, a TikTok star instead of an actual actress. While we won’t be so quick to judge Addison Rae, given her credibility as well as her charisma, we would’ve liked to see a trained actress tackle this role, and there’s a chance that her performance could come off as bland. Oh, right, speaking of bland . . . Kourtney Kardashian? They really had to cast the one vanilla Kardashian? Sigh.
All we can do is be hopeful, even if Netflix has a very low percentage of quality Netflix original films. We will add, however, that if they’re able to incorporate “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer then we’ll automatically bump the film’s score by five points . . . we won’t reveal out of how many, though.