Boys And Girls

"Excellent"

Boys And Girls Review


Boys and Girls plays like a college version of When Harry Met Sally..., with just as much fun and fewer contrivances. Here, the key couple is Ryan and Jennifer, who meet by chance on a plane as pre-teens, and continually bump into one another until their lives bisect at Cal-Berkeley. Ryan, played by Flavor of the Moment Freddie Prinze Jr., is a bright, sometimes awkward engineering student who loves planning and order; Jennifer, Meet Joe Black's Claire Forlani, majors in Latin for no particular reason and aims to travel. Both wish they could apply their positive personality traits to their floundering relationships, but it just doesn't work.

The smart script for Boys and Girls, written by the humbly-credited "Drews", succeeds in part because Ryan and Jennifer nurture their unique friendship for nearly all of the film. While the inevitable Hollywood ending may be in viewers' minds from the get-go, The Drews and director Robert Iscove keep us guessing if this pair might ever connect with each other, and the sweet performances by Prinze and Forlani keep us interested.. The couple's interplay, and the machinations of their separate, frustrating lovelives, are satisfying enough that a sunshiny ending is not required.

Iscove, a TV veteran and director of Prinze's She's All That, provides so much screen time between the leads that there are times when sequences seem almost too long - until we realize we're seeing Ryan and Jennifer weeks or months later, and not the same night as the previous scene. It's one of the many subtle surprises in Boys and Girls, and it keeps the film floating with an infectious energy.

When movies like these create supporting roles, it's usually to provide basic comic relief or other plot motivation that minimizes the characters - not the case here. Jason Biggs, becoming famous and good very quickly, is Hunter, Ryan's roommate who changes hair color every semester and stories with every girl he meets; Amanda Detmer garners sympathy as Jennifer's nervous, jealous roommate, desperately trying to find her way while being overly reliant on her therapist. This pair become neatly woven into the story, rather than existing just on the fringes. It's more effort than you'd find in say, Nora Ephron's standard Tom Hanks-Meg Ryan romances.

One of the best compliments that can be paid to Boys and Girls is that it recalls Cameron Crowe's work. Sure, there's the basic story of young adults trying to get comfortable in their own skin, but there's more. Iscove injects the film with the total atmosphere of college life, Berkeley, and San Francisco, creating a fuller environment for his characters and story. Crowe showed similar skills with Singles and ...Say Anything, and that kind of detail adds a real flavor and maturity to the movie.

When John Hughes created The Breakfast Club in the mid-80s, he added substance and humor to his characters, making a seemingly "teen" movie appeal to a broad audience. The makers of Boys and Girls were obviously affected by Hughes (aside from Ryan and Jennifer going to a Hughes double-feature): moving against the grain of recent films, Boys and Girls glides by with no nudity, no gross-out humor, and minimal stereotyping, and yet should still appeal to the high school and college audience. It avoids cheap laughs and respects its young characters, and that's a welcome change.

Girl and girl.



Boys And Girls

Facts and Figures

Run time: 94 mins

In Theaters: Friday 16th June 2000

Distributed by: Miramax

Production compaines: Dimension Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 11%
Fresh: 7 Rotten: 55

IMDB: 5.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: Freddie Prinze Jr. as Ryan Walker, as Jennifer Burrows, as Hunter / Steve, as Amy

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

The 2012 Canadian comedy Goon was one of those surprising little films that snuck up...

Detroit Movie Review

Detroit Movie Review

After The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal reteam to...

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Good news: Steven Soderbergh's well-publicised retirement from directing only lasted about four years. He's back...

American Made Movie Review

American Made Movie Review

An enjoyably freewheeling tone and Tom Cruise's star wattage combine to make this an entertaining...

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

It's been a decade since Al Gore's wake-up-call documentary won the Oscar. And here he...

Advertisement
The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

It really doesn't matter that this movie is utterly ridiculous, because the central pairing of...

Final Portrait Movie Review

Final Portrait Movie Review

A relaxed, amusing true story about noted Swiss painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti, this sharply...

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Finnish artist Tuoko Laaksonen used the name "Tom of Finland" as he drew explicit illustrations...

A Ghost Story Movie Review

A Ghost Story Movie Review

Filmmaker David Lowery reunites the stars from his offbeat Western Ain't Them Bodies Saints for...

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

From the co-director of John Wick, this similarly styled action romp puts Charlize Theron front...

Girls Trip Movie Review

Girls Trip Movie Review

This movie's premise basically sounds like The Hangover with added black girl power. But it's...

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

There's so much manic energy in this animated action comedy that it can't help but...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.