When her essay about a woman posing as a male jock is scoffed at during a contest, a teenage journalist decides to prove her theory’s feasibility.
(That is one of the most inaccurate Netflix summaries I’ve read. But not nearly as inaccurate as this movies subtitles which were consistently wrong, to the point of absurdity.)
Terry is a girl who seems to have it all – a college boyfriend, good looks and a convertible. But her dream of becoming a reporter are in jeopardy when she’s passed over for a summer internship at a newspaper and she’s convinced it’s due to her gender. To prove her point, she enrolls at a neighboring school to apply for the same internship as a guy. Obviously posing as a guy leads to much hilarity and the inevitable crush on your friend who thinks you’re a dude.
If you’re wondering why that plot sounds familiar, that’s because it’s the original Twelfth Night teen movie adaptation that would be repeated 15 years later with Motocrossed and 20 years later with She’s The Man. Shakespeare is the greatest inspiration for teen movies, ever. That said, I always love a good genderswap plot. Especially when its set in high school. And especially, especially when it’s used to point out sexist hypocrisy.
There aren’t too many big names in this movie. Most of its actors had decent careers in the 80s and 90s, but there aren’t really any big time stars.
Joyce Hyser as Terry Griffith
This is still Joyce Hyser’s most well known role, which isn’t surprising, since she’s amazing. Not only is she gorgeous (she’s wickedly attractive both as a girl and a guy), she really nails her dude mannerisms. As much as I adore She’s The Man, it requires a certain suspension of belief to think that no one would suspect Amanda Bynes of being a girl in disguise. With Hyser’s performance, you can totally understand the other characters being duped.
William Zabka as Greg Tolan (the bully)
An 80s teen movie wouldn’t right without a bully. And William Zabka is pretty much a quintessential 80s meat head.
Sherilyn Fenn as Sandy
This was one of Sherilyn Fenn’s first roles! She looks so young! What a baby! Hard to believe she was going to become this vamp. (And yes, any excuse to link to gorgeous photos of Sherilyn Fenn.)
Couch-Sharing Capability: High!
Oh, this is definitely the kind of movie to watch with friends. Although, you’re going to be hard pressed to find anything that qualifies as a “teen movie” that I wouldn’t consider a group movie. To me, “teen movie” implies a certain level of comedy and fun. If it isn’t fun to watch with friends, then it’s just a movie, imho.
Recommended Level of Inebriation: Moderate
Whatever floats your boat here, but I’d recommend staying sober enough to catch the jokes. This is a movie deserving of your attention!
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I’m not sure why this movie doesn’t get the love that other classic teen 80s movies are given (especially those in the John Hughes wheelhouse). Yeah, it makes the occasional best of list, but it doesn’t even have a Collector’s DVD. It’s absolutely a much watch for any teen movie aficionado and should be required viewing for most FYA readers. And while it’s not a perfect movie (what a wet blanket of a lead male love internet), its absolutely worth your while.