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Home Reviews Cinema reviews I Love You, Beth Cooper
I Love You, Beth Cooper Print E-mail
Written by Ivan Radford   
Friday, 21 August 2009 11:31
Director: Chris Columbus
Cast: Hayden Panettiere, Paul Rust, Jack Carpenter
Certificate: 12A

That's what high-school nerd Denis Cooverman (Rust) declares to the whole year in his graduation speech - his love for the titular totty (and most popular girl in the school, etc), played by that girl from Heroes (Panettiere). And what does she do? Why, she turns up on his doorstep that night and shows him The Time of His Life. What a hilarious happenstance!


Accompanied by her gaggle of giggling friends, that girl from Heroes takes Denis and his friend, Rich (Carpenter), for a ride. In a car. Then they get out the car and buy drink. Then, they get back in the car. You get the idea - this is clearly top-notch teen movie stuff.


Directed by Chris Columbus (the guy who helmed Home Alone and Harry Potter's bloated early outings), I Love You Beth Cooper is dull, flat and annoying. On the page, it seems perfect fodder for the director who once wrote The Goonies and Gremlins: one night of crazy kiddy chaos. No wonder Chris leaped at the chance when he was halfway through Larry Doyle's book of the same name. The bad news? He forgot to finish reading it.

So we end up with a completely misjudged tone - it tries to be naughty and dirty, but like a shy 7 year old, can't quite bring itself to use swear words. From threesomes and wet-towel whippings to stepping in a cow pat (how witty!), not one moment of this lazy pile of tosh rings true. More importantly, it's not funny. At all. That girl from Heroes is all misunderstood and deep, but also incredibly shallow and retarded. Denis is geeky and pathetic. And Rich has the most irritating habit of reeling off movie quotes, rapidly followed by the film title and its year of release. It's like having a conversation with IMDB. Oh, and he might be gay.

In a way, this is a touching tribute to Columbus' late peer, the great John Hughes. In a way, it's also defiling his naked corpse. It depends how you look at it: it's either complete crap. Or it's complete crap. There are no jokes, no characters and definitely no plot. And without all those bits, you do wonder what's the point. Unless you've had a lobotomy. 


More boring than the first Harry Potter film.






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