out of Five
Running time: 95
Enjoyable teen bodyswap romcom, enlivened by likeable comic performances from both Armstrong and Zegers.
What's it all about?
Samaire Armstrong (Anna from The OC) and Kevin Zegers play Nell Bedworth and Woody Deane, two neighbouring high school students who, naturally, hate each other. However, after arguing in front of a mysterious Egyptian artefact during a museum trip, the pair wake up in each other's bodies.
Initially, Nell and Woody set about trashing each other's high school reputations, to amusing comic effect. However, they soon discover that they will have to work together if they want their normal lives back.
Armstrong and Zegers put a huge amount of work into their performances and it pays off - they're both excellent at playing the opposite sex, which leads to some extremely amusing scenes. Zegers gets the biggest laughs, mostly by bursting into tears and changing the way he walks, but Armstrong has a lot of fun too, particularly when she's angry.
The most interesting thing about the film is how close it comes to doing something genuinely different for example, at one point it looks as if the characters will make out with each other whilst in each other's bodies. Sadly, in the end, the script chickens out, despite several intriguing opportunities.
Clearly the influence of American Pie still runs strong in the teen romcom genre, because the film's biggest problem is an over-reliance on gross-out humour and sex jokes, despite the fact that there are no sex scenes. Also, those put off by the presence of Sharon Osbourne (as Woody's white trash mum) can rest easy, as she's only in three scenes.
The film's other problem is that it doesn't know when to stop. It has a perfectly enjoyable emotional climax and then bungles it by continuing for another ten minutes.
A worthy addition to the bodyswap genre, thanks to a decent script and superb performances from its likeable leads.
It's A Boy Girl Thing (12A)