Starring: Jesse Metcalfe, Ashanti, Arielle Kebbel
Director: Betty Thomas
Running Time: 89 mins
John Tucker Must Die is an American film about three ex-girlfriends of the high school jock, having cheated on all of them with each other, who set out to break his heart by making him fall in love with a girl that no-one had ever noticed before.
Now, these sort of teen movies have some of the most generic, shallow and predictable plots in the world, normally complemented by less than average comedy. However, while I admit how cheesy and one-dimensional this story actually was, I found it a surprisingly entertaining take on your normal teen movie.
The main reason for that was, unexpectedly, the standard of the comedy. The film starts off like any other high school flick, and the whole comedic nature of the story is relatively weak, but for some reason, I found almost all of the major jokes really funny, and it definitely made me smile and enjoy this a lot more by being able to genuinely laugh at the majority of the gags.
However, even the plot, as cheesy as it may be, was still a lot of fun. There are two sides to the story, one about the characters, and one about wanting to destroy John Tucker, and it is only the latter that’s entertaining, but it still really works, full of hair-brained schemes and hilariously idiotic (and stupidly unrealistic) attempts at revenge on this guy, but it’s still really enjoyable to watch.
Despite all of that fun, this film does still fall into the pitfalls that all these type of movies do. This is clearest when the romance takes over as the main part of the story, and you see the main character go from ‘loser’ to (insufferable) ‘popular girl’. Sadly, this is just one of many hugely irritating and clichéd elements of the story, and it’s the fact that the story does use them in such a significant way that really interrupts the enjoyment of the crazy comedy on the other side of the story.
Finally, despite there being a consistent amount of fun disregarding the cheesiness of some aspects of the story, the ending really is disappointing. It throws away all of the enjoyability and craziness of the previous hour or so, and ends up being the most stereotypical conclusion ever.
Overall, then, this gets a 6.9, because although I really enjoyed some of the more fun aspects of it, it really fell down once it suffered from the typical teen movie mistakes.