She’s All That (***) - On a survey that one of my friends gives me every year about movies, he always lists a bunch of special categories like “Favorite Character in a Movie” or “Most Boring Film”. One of the columns lists a title that reads “Biggest Sleeper” - which is in regards to a good film that gets overlooked by the public or a movie that shocked the hell out of me by how much I enjoyed it. Get where I’m going here?I wasn’t expecting very much out of this film especially since the idea has been retread through tons of feature films, Disney Channel flicks, and after school specials, but I found myself laughing and caring about the two main characters in the film. I’m as skeptical as they come when it comes to retreading stale waters. Forget for a moment that you can see how the film will turn out by the previews or that its another film about a “ugly duckling” that anyone with a good eye could see was a beauty in disguise. Rachael Leigh Cook is that beauty and quite frankly, she’s gorgeous. I could stare into those eyes all day. But I couldn’t believe how much I was laughing in the theater, out loud, and very loud, during many scenes - especially at jokes that seemed like the audience didn’t even get. The last time that happened was another teenage film called “Clueless”. For example, I’m a big hater of MTV’s Real World and this film takes some real shots at it by casting a character who essentially is playing Puck, who all MTV watchers will remember as the jagoff who was such a jagoff that he actually got tossed out of the house. Matthew Lillard from Scream really relishes playing this role, even if he is a minor character. Another great moment involves Kevin Pollak, the father of the Cook character, watching Jeopardy and spouting out incredibly funny answers in a serious tone. To the question - “Who invented the printing press?” Pollak answers “Who is Hewlett-Packard”. It’s a great scene and it’s played in the background while the movie progresses in the foreground. I almost drowned out the foreground with my laughter. Also out of left field comes a whacked-out performance art piece with a cameo from Alexis Arquette (the Boy George wannabe from The Wedding Singer). In the same way the Baldwin brothers get less talented with age - the Arquette boys get weirder and scarier. There are so many great individual moments that make up the movie that you grant the film its premise (unlike in another movie I saw the same night). I loved the moment when Cook is given her makeover. We’ve seen it hundreds of times, but there are little touches that make the scene work perfectly. I don’t wanna say too much to spoil the film, but I’d be remissed if I didn’t mention the film has the best gross out joke I’ve seen since There’s Something About Mary - one which even Clarence Thomas would be proud of. As for the performances - well the film is full of fresh faces, all of them doing their part. But the biggest surprise for me was Freddie Prinze Jr. I have to admit that I didn’t think much of Chico and the Man’s son from the Jennifer Love Hewitt pictures, but he did a complete 180 on me with this role, giving his role some sweetness and not your typical popular asshole jock where Jodi Lyn O’Keefe plays your garden variety Prom Queen bitch, a character that makes a serious argument against the age-old wisdom of not hitting women. And Rachael Leigh Cook is a complete delight. My God those eyes.I had a smile on my face for all 97 minutes of the film and I wouldn’t be surprised if 1999’s column under “Biggest Sleeper” read She’s All That.