‘Get Over It’
Talk about truth in advertising.
The initial ads for Miramax’s ”Get Over It” featured a shapely blonde bearing what appears to be an automatic weapon. The tag line: ”The year’s sexiest comedy!” Obviously, the ads were aimed at gun-happy, testosterone-loaded male teens.
New ads feature close-ups of cast members and the line: ”This weekend pull off something big.”
In reality, ”Get Over It” contains no gunplay unless you count a small, stage-prop crossbow the heroine accidentally shoots at the hero. As for sex, there are busty girls aplenty, but the lust factor never exceeds chaste kissing.
”Get Over It” actually is a rather sweet love story with attractive actors (though they seem too mature to be in high school) and a fair amount of laughs. The grown-ups are dunderheads, but that’s standard in teen flicks.
The highlight of the film is the rehearsing and staging of a modern version of ”A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (the film borrows from ”Shakespeare in Love,” but that’s not bad a bad source).
Berke Landers (Ben Foster) seems totally pleased with his senior year. He plays on the basketball team and is going steady with the school’s dream girl, Allison (Melissa Sagemiller). But when a dashing new student with a Brit accent (Shane West) steals Allison away, Berke is desolate. In his effort to win Allison back, he enlists the help of Kelly (Kirsten Dunst), his best friend’s sister.
Even though he displays no obvious talent, Berke manages to be accepted by the flighty drama teacher (Martin Short) for the senior play. Melissa stars in the production, and Berke hopes he can spend time with her and win her back. Kelly helps him learn Shakespeare and singing, and these scenes are the film’s most winning.
Director Tommy O’Haver, who wrote and directed 1998’s ”Billy’s Hollywood Screen Kiss,” has said, ”This is not your ordinary teen movie.” Thanks to him and screenwriter R. Lee Fleming Jr., it’s not. O’Haver shows a sensitivity to the tender moments and a talent for sight gags.
Fleming, who also wrote the 1999 teen comedy ”She’s All That,” supplies a serviceable plot. He can’t avoid the cliche of doltish parents, but he does provide a twist by having Swoosie Kurtz and Ed Begley Jr. play TV sex advisers for whom anything goes.
Blank-faced Foster carries the load as the frustrated Berke, and he’s convincingly sympathetic. Dunst brings depth to her role as his would-be sweetheart. Sagemiller is properly aloof as the girl who jilts Berke.
Short has some funny, manic riffs as the drama teacher who likes to quote ”friends” such as Robert De Niro and Kevin Spacey. Rapper Sisqo makes his film debut but has little to do until some dancing and singing at the end.
”Get Over It” boasts no fewer than nine producer credits, too many to tell who did what. Miramax did not screen the film for critics ahead of time. Rated PG-13 for some crude/sexual humor, teen drinking and language. Running time: 90 minutes.
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