FULL OF IT
* (out of 5)
March 2, 2007
Ryan Pinkston as SAM LEONARD
Kate Mara as ANNIE DRAY
Teri Polo as MRS. MORAN
Craig Kilborn as MIKE HANBO
John Carroll Lynch as MR. LEONARD
Cynthia Stevenson as MRS. LEONARD
Amanda Walsh as VICKI SANDERS
Studio: New Line Cinema
Directed by: Christian Charles
BY KEVIN CARR
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It’s somewhat amazing what happens to my opinion of some films if I just let it sit for a while before I pen my review. Some films, actually recover a bit from the viewing experience, leading me to say that they weren’t as bad as I originally thought.
However, some films just get worse and worse the more that I think about them. These usually start off bad in the theater, and the more I think about it, they just fester like a dead possum on the side of the road. “Full of It” is that kind of movie.
I knew nothing of this film when I went to see it. Usually that’s good for the film because low expectations are easy to live up to. However, “Full of It” crashed and burned so fast that even the lowest – or non-existent – expectations couldn’t save it.
The movie follows a dorky high school senior named Sam Leonard (Ryan Pinkston) who just transferred to a new school. After realizing that he has a pathetic life (which really should have occurred to him years ago), he follows the really bad advice of a really bad guidance counselor: lie to make things better.
Sam starts to tell wild lies around school. Some of these lies include how his English teacher has a crush on him and how he never misses in basketball. One day Sam wakes up, and his lies have magically come true. While it makes his life more interesting, it throws it into chaos. Through this inconceivable turn of events, Sam leans important life lessons.
The film feels like a bad “Freaky Friday” rip-off – something you might have seen in a Disney live-action feature years ago. However, it tries too hard to grab the older teenage audience with overt drug references and some relatively crass blue humor. All of this yields a PG-13 rating, but it blocks anyone in their right mind from suggesting that it’d be appropriate for a pre-teen audience.
That’s too bad, really, because the it’s utterly implausible and unexplained plot plays out at a pre-teen level. I find it difficult to believe that anyone over the age of 12 would find the jokes funny or even buy into the concept.
“Full of It” stars… well, nobody really. The lead is played by Ryan Pinkston of “Punk’d” fame. At least he didn’t bring Dax Shepard along with him. The most recognizable name is possibly up-and-comer Kate Mara, or maybe Teri Polo from “Meet the Parents.” Polo is probably the best thing in the film, giving it her all. It’s too bad she’s stuck in such a godawful film.
Although Pinkston plays a character that is precisely his real age, his overly youthful appearance makes it a hard sell. Pinkston could make a career of being an edgy Michael J. Fox for his own generation, but he needs to find a quality project to do first.
The casting of Kate Mara as his rebellious pseudo-girlfriend is a complete misfire. Mara is such a naturally pretty girl that she doesn’t pull off the outcast. They didn’t put her in glasses or braces, which is the normal Hollywood fix to make a pretty girl ugly on screen. Her character’s relationship with Sam develops unbelievably fast, and it’s utterly ridiculous that she’d end up falling for him. Trust me, as a former nerd in school, this wouldn’t happen.
I really hate to stoop to obvious and crass ways to sum up a film, but in the interest of this movie, I cannot resist… “Full of It” isn’t just a title. Add an S and an H, and you have my most honest review.