Despite starring the lovable Hayden Panettiere, the movie "I Love You, Beth Cooper" does not leave much to love or even like
When a geeky high-school valedictorian throws caution to the wind by expressing his love for a popular cheerleader during his graduation speech, life finally starts to get interesting in this coming-of-age comedy adapted from the book by journalist/author/screenwriter Larry Doyle.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language, some teen drinking and drug references, and brief violence.
Runtime: 102 minutes
"The writer of I Love You, Beth Cooper says the story is based on a dream. I believe him. This is one of the very few movies where I wanted the hero to wake up and discover it was only a dream. But it's a dream all the way through -- a dream evoking just another teen rom-com. I am also tiring of the way high school movies insist that all non-heroic characters travel in posses of three. All most popular girls arrive flanked by two girlfriends who follow them by half a step. And all macho villains have two underlings who follow their orders. The movie also goes over the top with special effects, where the theory "less is more" must be in an incomprehensible language. Scene after scene is on autopilot. Of the two co-stars, what I can say is that I'm looking forward to their next films. As Beth, Hayden Panettiere is professional and lovable; she convincingly projects emotions and has a face the screen loves. Paul Rust, as Denis the valedictorian, can be very earnest and sincere, and actually seems to take the plot seriously, which is more than I could do." Roger Ebert
"The teen movie is a rehash of many others as a nerd pursues an out-of-his-league cheerleader. I Love You, Beth Cooper is not a remake -- it just feels like one. A flat, tired rehash of teen movie story tropes, the film attempts to have it both ways by winkingly acknowledging its secondhand origins. The distance from shameless rip-off to loving homage may not be far, but it is a chasm this film fails to jump." LA Times
"...if fun is what you're looking for, you might want to avoid I Love You Beth Cooper, the drab and incoherent teen comedy. . . . Directed by Chris Columbus with barely enough style and cinematic panache to eke out three minutes on YouTube. . . ." NY Times
"l Love You, Beth Cooper feels awkward in all the worst ways, bumbling along earnestly and hoping to earn a laugh or two from gags that were tired when they were first used in Home Alone. Worst of all, the film never captures the vibe or elicits the gut reactions of a really good book. In these difficult economic times, it makes more sense to buy Larry Doyle's novel and skip Chris Columbus' movie." Cinematical
"This attempt at comedy is painful from beginning to end. I Love You, Beth Cooper is a paralyzingly incompetent, unfunny, unbearable train wreck." Film.com
"Aiming for the heartfelt hilarity of Superbad, I Love You, Beth Cooper is just super bad." Rolling Stone
"Adapted by Larry Doyle from his 2007 novel, I Love You, Beth Cooper peaks early -- like, during the first three minutes -- and rapidly goes downhill from there." Variety
"Humorless Beth Cooper won't be so popular for long. As high school comedies go, I Love You, Beth Cooper is barely likable." USA Today