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Just One of the Girls (1993)

A film from my birth year! Anyway, this is another one of those “boy or girl must dress as opposite sex for simple reason but ends up doing it more and getting in over their head.” It has been done in films like Just One of the Guys, and even She’s the Man. It is a simple concept that always causes at least a few chuckles. Just One of the Girls is no different. Corey Haim plays Chris, your average high school kid. He has transferred to a new high school and already has a couple of bullies to deal with. One day while in a department store he dresses up as a girl to evade them and it works. After this he decides to dress up as a girl one more time just to avoid the bullies outside of school. His plan is the minute he gets inside he will change, but of course he doesn’t get that chance and has to keep up the facade of being a girl. As the days goes on Chris deals with high-school as a girl, becoming close friends with a cheerleader played by Nicole Eggbert, and even dating her brother who it turns out is the lead bully Chris had to deal with. As you can imagine, hilarity ensues.

If you go into this movie expecting something more you will be greatly disappointed. It is a true product of the 90’s and overall a fun comedy. I am a huge Corey Haim fan so I may be a little biased, but I was able to just sit back and enjoy. Granted it was definitely flawed, and it had some nonsensical moments for sure. However, if you keep in mind what kind of film this is, you may just find yourself laughing and having a good time. I feel like the writers may have had a slight problem with transgendered people. When his guidance counselor finds out that Chris is dressing up as a girlshey blows her tops. Mrs. G, the guidance counselor, is ready to turn him in to the principal of the school as well as his parents. Maybe the 90’s just weren’t as accepting, but it seemed like she was angry to find this out. Don’t get me wrong, I know why he is doing it, but she doesn’t. I always thought your counselor was supposed to be one of the most accepting and supportive people in a child’s life. But anyway, the movie oozes cheese. Chris is also an aspiring musician playing some kind of electronic music.  His biggest hope is to get into the music program at his new school so he can impress record companies. This sub-plot is pushed to the back burner though and only makes another appearance in the last 10 minutes.

Chris gets closer to Marie, Nicole Eggbert’s character, by joining the cheer-leading squad. This causes complications as Chris realizes he likes her as more than just a friend. He also has to deal with her brother, who was one of his bullies. After a date with Chris, Kurt begins to fall in lover with her, or who he thinks is a her. He comes unrelenting in his pursuit of her. Things escalate even more when the it is time for Cheer Camp. In a really corny scene where Chris and Marie are dancing in their room, Chris catches a moment and kisses Marie. This of course freaks Marie out and causes her to leave the room. His parents then enter shortly after Marie exits, and demand to know what Chris is up to. After he explains that he only did it to escape the bullies he father is furious and calls him a coward. His parents then take him home and demand he never returns to his new school again. Try to guess what Chris does. Yep, he returns back to the school dressed as a girl one more time.

I found myself laughing a lot and really connecting with the characters. That is definitely the high point of the film: They may be goofy but the characters are real. The scene where Corey Haim’s character has an epiphany and realizes he has to come clean about dressing as a girl you really can understand how frightening that is. To make matters worse he decides to tell the truth in front of the whole school at a pep rally. I will say his fellow classmates take it pretty well considering how close minded kids can be. This confession of course leads to Kurt being humiliating for lusting after a guy dressed as a girl. Due to some false stories he told everyone about hooking up with Chris, he feels he now must beat him up to teach him a lesson. However, Chris decides to take the fall and say he got Kurt drunk and only told him they had sex. We then have a “suspenseful” moment where Kurt decides whether or not knock Chris out. Predictably he has a change of heart, and the two suddenly become best buds. Chris realizes there is still one person he has to make things right with: Marie. Unfortunately Marie is not as easy to pursuade. He doesn’t offer a worthwhile reason for deceiving her, instead just repeatedly says he is sorry. When he leave she is still angry and unforgiving, however right before he goes on stage to perform she basically forgives him. This scene had a pretty funny moment. Chris asks Marie if they can “hang out” that night and she says “No, not tonight.” The scene just ends on that, and we then see her at his show. As he does some 90’s electronic piano playing we then cut to Marie in the audience, then back to Chris where we freeze frame and the film ends.

As the end credits roll I realize this film was trying to be one simple thing: entertaining. At that it most certainly succeeds. It has sloppy writing, goofy acting, and cheesy music, but it is a good time to be had. Fans of Corey Haim will definitely have a ball with it. He does a good job and is shirtless a few times throughout the 90 minutes run-time. He still looks hot regardless of the horrid hairstyle he has, one I believe he also wore in 1991’s Fast Getaway. Nicole Eggbert turns in a fine performance as Marie. Nothing oscar worthy but she does the part justice. I don’t think this film has a huge fan-base, in fact I don’t even think more than a handful of people have seen it. I think anyone who enjoys a good comedy that you don’t have to think for can definitely enjoy this. One problem is the DVD is OOP so you may not wanna shell out the 16 bucks I did. I realize this is not from the Dark Recesses of Cinema so I am probably going to re-do my blog a little bit so I can review any genre of film.

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