The Perfect Score (2004)

The Perfect Score
Director: Brian Robbins
Writer: Mark Schwahn, Marc Hyman, Jon Zack
Cast: Erika Christensen, Chris Evans, Bryan Greenberg, Scarlett Johansson, Darius Miles, Leonardo Nam, Tyra Ferrell, Matthew Lillard
Seen on: 2.1.2018

Kyle (Chris Evans) really wants to study architecture, but his SAT score just isn’t good enough. And he isn’t the only one who needs to up their score – by any means necessary. It’s lucky then that Francesca (Scarlett Johansson) has connections to the building where the SAT is made. Teaming up with an unlikely group of more or less struggling students, Kyle gets ready to pull off a heist to increase all of their scores.

The Perfect Score could have been nice but unfortunately they chose a sexist narrator and tried to go for a moral ending that just didn’t fit the rest of the film. So the film misses its mark and becomes mostly boring.

The entire film is narrated by Roy (Leonardo Nam): a stoner genius without ambition but who keeps commenting on every woman and her fuckability and looks. Generally, if there is a sexist remark or joke to be made, you bet that Roy will make it. And all I can say to that is fuck that noise. Loudly. Without that narration, the film would have become instantly better.

Although it would still be a far shot from being good. Because there would still be the problem of the film’s ending: the film is a classic heist movie set at a high school. And the way heist movies work is that the audience is rooting for the heisters to pull it off and get away with the prize and without any legal trouble. That means that the audience (partly) suspends their morality for the duration of the film. But The Perfect Score really wants a morally clean ending, no muddying of the waters anywhere. It is unbearably sanctimonious.

Sexist narration and bad ending are joined by flat characters for a triple whammy of eyerolling. And yet the film doesn’t slide into the territory of so bad it’s good, but remains firmly wedged in the uncomfortable center: it’s just so mediocre that it is mostly boring. I almost wished for it to be worse, so it would turn into at least a slightly entertaining. Unfortunately it was not to be.

Summarizing: Skip it, really.

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