Duff vs. Lohan: Duff

Ben Breier

Teen rivals share ex-boyfriend, bad reviews


Credit: Beth Rankin

Hilary Duff thinks she can do it all. She’s got her horrible career in pop music, her television show on the Disney channel, and now she’s infiltrating the big screen, showcasing new levels of outrageous stupidity in her latest movie, The Perfect Man.

Duff plays the role of Holly Hamilton, the daughter of a single mother (Heather Locklear) who moves across the country every time a relationship fails. The sheer premise of this movie is incredibly insipid — junior high school girls contemplate switching schools for a hot minute after they get dumped by their first boyfriend, but they don’t actually do it. Duff chronicles her misadventures by posting them on her online journal, and makes audience members hate their lives as she reads posts from her journal out loud at several points in the movie.

After the most recent breakup, the Hamilton family moves to Brooklyn, where Holly meets a classmate’s uncle, Ben, played by Chris Noth. After seeing Noth portray a suave New York City businessman straight out of GQ in “Sex and the City,” it’s very difficult to see him lend his talent to such tripe.

In order to prevent another move to another city in a couple of weeks, Holly creates an imaginary boyfriend for her mother. The incredibly sad part is that she manages to convince her mom that the boyfriend is real. Holly uses Ben’s photo and persona for the false boyfriend.

Shortly after this happens, audiences are forced to witness the most painful ten minutes of cinema ever placed on the silver screen. Duff (voiced by Noth during this scene), pretending to be the boyfriend, and Locklear exchange a series of eight e-mails, all of which are read out loud. We aren’t only talking about the body of the e-mail here. Noth starts each e-mail with “Dear Precious Baker,” and it is absolutely horrifying to watch and hear. Dyslexic five year olds could probably write better lines than some of the atrocities delivered throughout the agonizing course of The Perfect Man.

During the movie, Jean Hamilton briefly dates Lenny, the local turd who works at the bakery where Jean is also employed. It’s hard to believe Locklear’s character would actually date an obese, balding fat-ass who forces her to ditch her shoes upon entering his Trans Am. Lenny then proceeds to take Jean to a Styx concert – as if these vocalized e-mail conversations weren’t bad enough, the movie features a Styx concert right in the middle of the plotline.

The “acting,” if you can call it that, is an atrocity upon mankind. From Duff’s teen-angst ridden journal entries to Locklear’s overall obliviousness to life, this is a pretty embarrassing film to watch. At one point, Locklear breaks down in front of a computer screen. I couldn’t help but burst into laughter, as it was probably the most ridiculous thing I’ve observed lately, with the exception of the result of the Michael Jackson trial.

When all is said and done, there are no constructive things to be said about The Perfect Man – only destructive things. The Perfect Man is easily the worst movie thus far of 2005, and could even be considered for the worst movie thus far in the 21st century. Recommended only if you like Chinese Water Torture, colonoscopies, or being crushed under the massive weight of Michael Moore.

Contact general assignment reporter Ben Breier at [email protected].