The Hot Chick (12A)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner21/05/2003

One out of Five stars
Running time: 104 mins

Dismal attempt at comedy that even fans of ‘Deuce Bigalow’ and ‘The Animal’ will be hard pressed to enjoy – one or two good lines, but that really isn’t enough.

On a recent episode of South Park, Rob Schneider movies were singled out for a bit of a kicking, due to his propensity for ‘transformation comedies’ (“Rob Schneider is…The Stapler!”). On the evidence of The Hot Chick they may have had a point - after ‘Rob Schneider as Male Gigolo’ and ‘Rob Schneider as Animal’ we now get ‘Rob Schneider as Teenage Girl’. Body-swap comedies were all the rage in the 1980s and, with a bit of thought, this might have worked. Unfortunately, the film-makers decided to cram it full of gross-out gags and poor stereotypes instead.

Jewellery japes

The plot involves a pair of magic ear-rings that swap the bodies of whoever wears them. Bitchy cheerleading teen queen type Jessica (Rachel McAdams) nicks them from a craft shop and is then held up by Schneider’s low-life criminal. They get an ear-ring each. Body-swapping occurs. And then the penis jokes start.

Sadly, the two characters don’t get equal time, as the movie concentrates on ‘Jessica’ (now Schneider) and ‘her’ relationship with her parents, weird little brother, friends and boyfriend. McAdams only gets three comedy scenes as Schneider until she’s needed for the climax of the film and one of those is a tampon gag (“I have to do WHAT?”)

Dopey faced underdog

Schneider is an appealing ‘underdog’-type actor and his dopey face usually ensures his characters are at least likeable. However, he’s never really…er…convincing as a girl in the way that he was as various animals in The Animal and the laughs aren’t really there. The supporting cast do the best they can, particularly Anna Faris (from Scary Movie) as Jessica’s best friend April and Alexandra Holden as Lulu, who shines despite having the least written character.

A lot of the gags are really embarrassing, whether it’s badly-handled slapstick or, more frequently, fart gags, dick jokes and visual jokes about pissing, one of which is one of those ‘you’ll laugh despite yourself’ jokes and is one of the film’s only two good jokes.

Cross dressing kid brother

The main problem with the film is its over-reliance on stereotypes and ‘non-PC’ jokes. For every vaguely progressive gag (e.g the family calmly accepting the cross-dressing little brother; the suggestion of lesbianism) there’s an equivalent that falls horribly flat, the worst offenders being the homophobic joke and the African-American friend’s ‘embarrassing’ Korean mother.

In short, despite a couple of passably good lines and moments, this isn’t nearly as funny or as clever as it could have been. If you absolutely have to see a Rob Schneider comedy, rent The Animal instead. Or, alternatively, wait for Deuce Bigalow 2…

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The Hot Chick (12A)
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Content updated: 17/10/2017 04:57

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