He’s All That is a reimagining of the 1999 film, She’s All That. In the original Freddie Prinze Jr. was the popular kid trying to win a bet by making the adorkable Rachel Leigh Cook attractive. With the removal of her glasses and letting her hair down, he succeeded. In He’s All That Rachel Leigh Cook returns as a mom but there is no reference to her past. Addison Rae, plays Padgett Sawyer, Cook’s daughter. She has millions of followers on social media and is going to pay for college by cash-flowing endorsements. Her target is Cameron Kweller played by Tanner Buchanan, who just needs to lose his baseball cap, wash his hair, and becomes a beautiful man.
This film is bad and dumb despite having the same writer as the original, R. Lee Fleming Jr. Mark Waters of Mean Girls fame is behind the camera. The dialog is a mile a minute with no pauses in a noticeably unnatural way. There is no nuance to any of the conversations and it makes no lasting statement about inner/outer beauty nor about social media followings. It is also set in one of the wealthiest schools ever. One student has a single hit rap song and rides around in the back of a Rolls Royce convertible.
Padgett is supposed to be the salt of the earth because she is in a single-parent household with a mother who is struggling to make ends meet. Padgett makes enough money off her online following to help with the bills, yet she does not appear to be saving anything for college. As soon as her follower count drops, her manager, Kourtney Kardashian, leaves her. Padgett is concerned she won’t be able to cash-flow college. The inclusion of a Kardashian as an evil businesswoman who is done with you if your follower count drops is puzzling. Is she not expecting people to draw parallels to her real life? Is she trying to poke fun at herself, because I never saw a wink to acknowledge that?
It took me three sittings to get through this film and one was on an airplane with limited other options. It is not meant for me, but then again, I don’t know who it is meant for. If you want a high school film that still holds up, and has a fantastic music number, go watch Clueless. It is based on Jane Austen’s Emma.