Flat-footed, British-backed but American-set comedy "It's a Boy Girl Thing" reps yet another rejigging of the body-swap concept for the teen market, this time with a femme overachiever and a dim jock changing souls. After a dismal start, the script picks up in its middle act, but then devolves into predictable slush.

Flat-footed, British-backed but American-set comedy “It’s a Boy Girl Thing” reps yet another rejigging of the body-swap concept for the teen market, this time with a femme overachiever and a dim jock changing souls. After a dismal start, the script picks up in its middle act, but then devolves into predictable slush. Currently ringing up modest numbers in Blighty, “Thing” could go “ker-ching” on ancillary.

Despite having grown up next door to each other, prissy, unpopular geek Nell (Samaire Armstrong) and star quarterback Woody (the more engaging Kevin Zegers, from “Transamerica”) share a mutual dislike. After a stone-idol MacGuffin causes their souls to migrate, the two set about trying to ruin one another’s lives, provoking some minor amusement. Nevertheless, love blossoms just in time for the homecoming prom. Flavorless helming by Nick Hurran (“Little Black Book”) drags out the running time. Low budget is suggested by the choice of older tunes on a soundtrack the target demographic might sniff at — although vanity may be the reason exec producer Elton John’s “Candle in the Wind” crops up three times.

It's a Boy Girl Thing

U.K.

Production

An Icon Entertainment Intl. release (U.K.) of an Icon, Rocket Pictures presentation, in association with Scion Films, Alliance Atlantis, of a Rocket Pictures, Prospero Pictures production. Produced by David Furnish, Martin Katz, Steve Hamilton Shaw. Executive producers, Jeff Abberley, Julia Blackman, Wendy Grean, Elton John, Patrice Theroux. Directed by Nick Hurran. Screenplay, Geoff Deane, based on an idea by Steve Hamilton Shaw, Geoff Deane.

Crew

Camera (color, widescreen), Steve Danyluk; editor, John Richards; music, Christian Henson; production designer, Craig Lathrop; art director, Jon P. Goulding; costume designer, Donna Wong. Reviewed at Odeon Cinema Riverside, Norwich, U.K., Nov. 27, 2006. Running time: 94 MIN.

With

Samaire Armstrong, Kevin Zegers, Mpho Koaho, Brooke D'Orsay, Emily Hampshire, Sherry Miller, Robert Joy, Maury Chaykin, Sharon Osborne.
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