The Perfect Score

Odd, but my parents taught me if you wanted respect, you earned it. That poster tag line comes from “You Got Served,” or as it is commonly known in my house as “Breakin’ 3: Electric Bling Bling.”


So what does the tag line have to do with “The Perfect Score,” another disposable MTV movie about Generation Not and their quest to steal the American dream? The characters in “The Perfect Score” pool their collective talents to steal the SAT test in order to advance their college careers. The quagmire is that the characters are smart enough to break into a well guarded facility, but aren’t smart enough to apply themselves in their studies.

Instead of working for their grades, the characters in “The Perfect Score” decide to steal them. They all have their reasons, and even though the film is treated as a superficial comedy caper, it sends the wrong message. Should MTV, which just launched their “Rock the Vote” campaign and produced the film, be encouraging young people to steal their futures? Do we really need another generation that believes respect is something you take and not earn?

It’s sad to see smart performers like Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation) and Erika Christensen (Traffic) waste their talents in this muddled mess, two actors infinitely smarter than the movie they’re trapped in. Was this a career decision, or an earlier effort sitting on the shelf just waiting for its starts to make a name for themselves.

The students who comprise this “Mission: Implausible” are broken down into types, character shorthand so anyone with a limited IQ can tell them apart. There’s Kyle (Chris Evans), the handsome kid who wants to be an architect but lacks the grades to get into Cornell; Matty (Bryan Greenberg), who needs good grades to get into the same college as his girlfriend; Anna (Christensen), a bright student and overachiever who won’t settle for anything less than 100%; Desmond (Darius Miles), the basketball player who promised his mother he’ll go to college; and Roy (Leonardo Nam), a stoner just looking for kicks.

They team up with rebellious student Francesca (Johansson), whose father just happens to own the very building where the SAT tests are stored. There have been several recent movies about cheaters, so “The Perfect Score” arrives late on the scene. It’s yesterday’s news, another film that takes the audience for granted and expects them to be more forgiving than the mindless plot and lackluster direction.

No SAT-isfaction Sitting through “Perfect Score” is the real test

THE PERFECT SCORE

Scarlett Johansson, Erika Christensen, Chris Evans, Bryan Greenberg, Darius Miles, Matthew Lillard. Directed by Brian Robbins. Rated PG-13. 97 Minutes.

LARSEN RATING: $2.00



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