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Overall Rating

Awesome: 12.9%
Worth A Look32.26%
Average: 19.35%
Pretty Bad: 4.84%
Total Crap: 30.65%

6 reviews, 26 user ratings

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She's the Man
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by Jason Whyte

"How do I loathe thee, let me count the ways…"
1 stars

Allow me to gush for a moment. I admire Amanda Bynes and not just for her looks -- although to be honest with you, I find her as attractive as fellow writer Peter Sobczynski finds Milla Jovovich – but that I also find the 19 year old fiercely talented and a gifted comic. For the past few years I’ve seen her in some likeable but redundant work, from her few amusing moments in the WB show “What I like about You” to her cute performance in the 2003 dud “What a Girl Wants”. The only shining moment for her, film-wise, came in 2002 when she played against Frankie Muniz in “Big Fat Liar”, a surprisingly good kid-comedy where she battled against Paul Giamatti, pre-Sideways fame.

But anyway. Ms. Bynes is a lovely young woman who I think has the chops to do a great film, so why is she doing all of these ditzy tween comedies? Here we are, in early 2006, where she’s doing a movie like “She’s The Man”, a VERY loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night”, it is proof that she’s better than this and then some.

The film opens on her character, Viola, as she is happily playing soccer for her school, Cornwall, although not for much longer as the girl’s team is given the heave-ho due to an unbelievably sexist coach. She also isn’t feeling the love from her current boyfriend, who once claimed that she could play better than half the guys on her team. Meanwhile, Viola’s twin brother Sebastian (James Kirk) has just decided that he is going to forego his first two weeks at Illyria, a competing prep-school, to play with his band in London.

Viola, for one reason or another because it’s been done in movies prior to this, decides to assume Sebastian’s identity so she can get back at the school that nixed her. Through various makeup and wardrobe changes and strutting on the street behind other men to get the “walk”, Viola begins to assimilate herself into the school, although I find that a bit difficult since with her huge eyebrows, sideburns and bad wig, she now looks like a tween version of Ellen DeGeneres.

Viola is apparently so boneheaded that she keeps forgetting that she’s playing her brother, which leads to one agonizing scene after another where she keeps correcting herself, completely unbeknownst to everyone around her. If you have seen the TV spots to advertise the film, most likely you’ve seen Viola, as Sebastian, talking to another coed at the school in her own voice, then suddenly realizing she’s talking in her own voice, then doing an “ahem” to correct herself with an unconvincing drawl of an accent. Three times is usually the amount you can repeat a joke in a film and they multiply that number by about ten for this film.

Slowly but surely, “She’s The Man” begins to show that it doesn’t have that many ideas in its head and begins to substitute slapstick and plot-heavy love triangles involving nearly every major character in the film; the most frustrating being Duke (Channing Tatum), Sebastian’s roomate who has about as much spark as a blank wall. Not only does Bynes have trouble making us believe she would do all of this, we have even more trouble suspending our disbelief that no one questions why “Sebastian” is acting all out of whack for the entire length of the story.

Of course, I could gush on another paragraph about Amanda Bynes and question why she wasn’t in an indie flick at Sundance this year, but rather I want to point out the curiosity that this is yet another “loosely” based adaptation of a Shakespeare work, so much so that there is a questionable credit to the Bard in the opening credits of the film. The semblance of the story, a few character and location names are ported over, but that’s about it, really; the whole movie is a noisy teen comedy to keep the young crowd entertained on a Friday night and nothing more.

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originally posted: 03/24/06 16:22:23
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User Comments

1/16/17 xgbvzvlia USA 2 stars
3/13/12 May Q. Horney How can she be the man? She's a man.....DUH! That's how. 3 stars
4/05/11 Jennifer Marquardt awesome movie, funny, entertaining, must see 5 stars
10/15/09 molly omg duke hot dam boii!!!! 5 stars
10/14/07 David Pollastrini Amanda Bynes is hot in this! 3 stars
12/08/06 Kourtney Allen very good movie, i would recommend 5 stars
11/13/06 cody a great romantic comedy even for guys, amanda bynes is fine and movie is cool. 4 stars
10/11/06 kristen i thought this movie was awesome i loved all the actors especially amanda aka the best 5 stars
10/01/06 Beau Amanda Bynes has great acting ability, shes so out there and has a great sense of humor 4 stars
8/14/06 Sharon this movie wasnt all I expected but I loved looking at channing tatum 4 stars
8/10/06 Felicia She's the Man *1 fn It was a Awesome & Funny Film ever Filmed 5 stars
8/07/06 she's the man fan " I found this movie over all to be very funny but it's definetly a teen comedy. 4 stars
7/30/06 San Lamar it was so funny 5 stars
7/24/06 Joyce Verhoeven I thought that the film would be nicer 3 stars
7/22/06 DHollings207 Amanda Bynes is a great talent, but this film isn't really funny 2 stars
6/22/06 julian backfece brilliant, she is stunny.. i loved her acting, sense of humor, manorisms. she has talent 5 stars
6/11/06 William Goss Entirely predictable yet surprisingly tolerable, with all the charm of a retarded puppy. 3 stars
4/27/06 tibby i thought it was funny and i really liked it 4 stars
4/21/06 Nienna better than i thought it would b 4 stars
4/11/06 Anthony Cute film but no "Mean Girls". 3 stars
4/10/06 Ron Newbold My daughter loved it - good for that age group 4 stars
4/06/06 Troy M. Grzych This concept has been done time & time again, rent "Just One Of The Guys" instead! 3 stars
3/31/06 Soha Molina no good 2 stars
3/28/06 John Aster Habig Amanda Bynes is hot, especially as a man too bad there were no lesbian scenes 4 stars
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  17-Mar-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 18-Jul-2006



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