In early January I got to see a screening of CBS’ new film The Duff, based on the book by Kody Keplinger, so I thought it would be fun to do a Page to Screen Review of the book and movie. BE AWARE: THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS.
Summery: Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper may not be the prettiest girl in her high school, but she has a loyal group of friends, a biting wit, and a spot-on BS detector. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush, who calls Bianca the Duff–the designated ugly fat friend–of her crew.
Book Review: I really enjoyed this book. When I started reading the book I was very surprised by some of the more mature content but I guess you can get away more in a book then in a movie. However while there was sex in the book it was not graphic at all so I can see how Keplinger was able to get away with it.
One of the things that I liked most about the book was Bianca. She is cynical and sarcastic but that is what endeared her to me. Wesley also was a great character. I liked that even though he turned out to be a pretty good guy he didn’t go through a 180 degree change. I thought that definitely lent an air of realism to the whole book.
The pacing of the book was good. The story definitely kept me hooked. I finished it in a couple of days because I couldn’t put it down and just wanted to know what happened next.
Movie Review: The movie was so great. But then again any movie that starts off with a Breakfast Club reference is my kind of movie. It was charming, fun, entertaining, and had me laughing throughout the entire thing. I especially loved the addition of Allison Janney and Ken Jeong who were absolutely hysterical.
But by far my favorite part of the movie was the relationship between Bianca (Mae Whitman) and Wesley (Robbie Amell). Every scene that involved the two of them was amazing. The chemistry between them was obvious and just made their scenes together that much fun to watch.
What most surprised me (but in a totally good way) was how raunchy it was. When I first saw the trailer (and some of the changes) I assumed the mature content of the book was taken out to ensure a PG-13 rating. So I was surprised by a lot of the sexual innuendo and raunch jokes throughout the film. But again, surprised in a good way (I do tent to have a very raunchy sense of humor so I really enjoyed it).
|Robbie Amell (Wesley) and Mae Whitman (Bianca)|
Compare and Contrast: When I first saw the trailer I was a little worried because it was totally different from the book. Usually I am a purist when it come to book adaptations but I in this case I was totally fine with the changes made because in the end the essence of the book remained: it doesn’t matter how others see you it’s about how you see yourself.
As an adaptation the movie left a lot to be desired but as a movie, on its own, it was great. It was cute and funny without being too fluffy. One change that I wasn’t crazy about, however, was Bianca’s relationship with her friends Casey (Bianca A Santos) and Jess (Skyler Samuels). In the book Casey and Jess play a big part but their characters were cut down in the film and most of the film revolves around Bianca and Wesley.
Overview: I loved the movie and will definitely be seeing it again when it comes out in theaters. I really hope the movie does well because I feel like it has the potential to be a classic teen movie like Mean Girls, Easy A or Sixteen Candles.
Extra: I attended an early screening of the film at The Grove here in LA with my friend Sara (you can check out her blog here). While we were waiting in line before the screening they brought over a cardboard cutout of Robbie Amell for people to take pictures with.
After about a two hour wait we were finally let into the theater and found our seats.
Before the movie started it was introduced by Robbie Amell (Wesley), Bella Thorne (Madison), Nick Eversman (Toby), and Bianca Santos (Casey).
The cast stayed until after the film (except Bella who had a family emergency) to meet everyone and take photos.
Because Robbie had tweeted that he might be at the screening I brought my copy of The Duff for him to sign. I ended up having Bianca and Nick sign it as well.
The Duff comes out in theaters February 20th and is Rated PG-13