All the Boys Love Mandy Lane – 1 out of 5
Officially, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane was made in 2006 but was never distributed until this year and it was due to complications involving companies going out of business. However, after the wait (I remember seeing this trailer make the rounds on the internet years ago) and actually seeing the final product, I think the real reason for the delay was that it just plain sucked.
|Damn, even the character became bored and broke the 4th wall in order to show that.|
As the title would suggest (and the film will remind you in never ending annoying ways), all the boys love the pretty little virgin Mandy Lane (Amber Heard) and all want to be the man to finally place his naughty stick in her fun hole. Seriously, ALL the boys; even grown men who should be ashamed that they are leering at an underage high school student want to do naughty (and terribly illegal) things to a girl who, in reality, has no personality and is pretty “Plain Jane” in the looks department. Any-who, a horrible incident incited by her best friend Emmet (Michael Welch) causes the two to have a falling out and, eventually, the personality-less Mandy is asked to go out with some of her fellow students who, in the least subtle way possible, all wanna get their fuck-on with the girl. Mysteriously, Mandy agrees and heads out to a secluded ranch for the weekend. Pretty soon, two of the members of the group disappear and horror is not far behind…coincidentally, the intangible emotion of horror also fell in love with Mandy.
|"I'm desirable because the script says I am!"|
Sometimes things are worth the wait. Things like the slow moving and delicious ketchup coming out of the glass bottle, the next season of your favorite show to start, the hot shower after a long day or the pizza guy (getting the actual pizza or the inevitable porn situation are BOTH the things worth the wait in that case). I saw the trailer for Mandy Lane years back and was sold by the grindhouse/Texas Chainsaw Massacre-feel of the trailer and the promises of the “most frightening thing you’ll ever see.” However, after actually getting to finally see it, I found a film that was just boring and, ultimately, felt like the story was made up on the fly as they were filming…and that’s just the beginning of the film’s problems.
|It's okay, movie, we don't need the film in focus.|
I’ll just get right too it, the fact that everyone in the world with male genitalia (and some with female) fall in love with Mandy Lane was, pretty much, pointless for the entire length of the film. While it ultimately has some play in the film’s predictable twist ending (seriously, I called the “twist” before the first body hit the ground), it is pretty much moot for a majority of the film. Right off the bat, the story wants you to know that Mandy is the “hot, unattainable girl” and they do this with stupid slo-mo shots going up and down Mandy’s body (it felt really pervy, just saying) or just plain having your characters act like morons and say they want her. They say it to each other and even to Mandy herself and come off less like a group of teenagers written by a person who has no understanding of how teenagers act and felt more like some strange alternate reality where people no longer have the ability of inner monologue and just say whatever they are feeling out-loud all the time.
|"He he, I'm clearly an over-aged man who should know better than to leer creepily |
at younger girls but there literally is no other way for this film to imply that
everyone wants Mandy."
While this element ends up lazily being the catalyst for this lifeless teen slasher film, it ended up just being annoying to me and took me out of the story. First off, it just looked silly having every character talk about how they want Mandy like she’s not in the room even when she’s in the room and the constant slow motion shots of her with radiant sunlight streaking its way in from behind her while she smiled sheepishly at the ground and played with her hair became fodder for a drinking game and ended up making the film look like a comedy that was making fun of such film staples. Finally, and this is just personal taste here, but I saw nothing about Mandy that warranted the attention she got.
|Okay, movie, we get it. She's suppose to be hot.|
I don’t find Amber Heard that attractive, her looks are a dime-a-dozen and I can see girls that look like her whenever I go out in public. So, right off the bat, I couldn’t understand the attraction that the entire high school had for Mandy—especially since there was more attractive extras behind her in a lot of scenes. It doesn’t help that never in the film is Mandy shown to have any sort of personality or that she is even capable of feeling emotions like a human. For the entire film, Mandy is just lazily wandering in and out of every scene of the film and offering nothing that is justifying why this character is even the main character to begin with or why the character’s name is even in the title. Shit, Mandy barely speaks and, at times, it felt like she was the foreign exchange student and was incapable of interacting with anyone due to language barriers.
Additionally, Heard isn’t very memorable as an actress. Her character is already forgettable and only memorable due to the fact that no conversation in the film can go two words without mentioning Mandy Lane but Heard isn’t doing the character any favors as she just feels like she is a cardboard cutout that was placed on set and the actors were just told to interact like she was really there and they would put her in during post through some CG effects. All these elements came together to make me wonder why the fuck anyone on this blue orb called Earth would even give Mandy a second look. She wasn’t that pretty, she wasn’t interesting and she is clearly not a joy to talk to.
|Yes, she is a roaring fire of personality and looks, people.|
The movie already felt like they were just phoning it in with their main character and total reason for the story but they weren’t helping by filling the rest of the cast with people who were only marginally better than Heard. The rest of the teenagers are terrible to endure and can’t act to save their lives but, at the very least, are actively trying to contribute to the story and film and aren’t just here to smile and play with their hair. The only decent member is Anson Mount (from Hell on Wheels) as the caretaker for the ranch; Garth. Despite some creepiness with Garth giving Mandy the eyes (even though I can’t figure out why), Mount is the only one with any talent in the film and the only one who actually has some character behind their generic descriptions that were written in the script.
|"Hey, look...it's my future career on a decent Western on an amazing network|
out there on the horizon..."
Okay…so the character of Mandy doesn’t live up to the title, the actors suck—what else could this generic slasher throw at you? I mean, by process of elimination, the scares and gore MUST be good…except they aren’t. With it’s slow moving, very boring story, I was already too close to a coma (and still trying to figure out why everyone is so obsessed with such a lifeless, boringly ordinary girl) to even muster a raised heart rate for the unimaginative spooks and very little gore.
|"We're heading out to a secluded location with no parental supervision. Have you|
made any enemies lately, Mandy? If yes, then come with us because it's not
like we'll get murdered where our chances of calling for help are non-existent."
All the Boys Love Mandy Lane is a boring, boring, boring slasher movie that clearly WANTS to be a grindhouse/teen slasher film from the 70s and 80s but doesn’t want to put the effort in. With a story that feels just plain lazy, acting not worth the price they paid for and a lead character who looks like they are putting in less effort than an extra who just wants to get the scene done because they want to go home, Mandy Lane proves to be a movie that never should have been distributed and just remained in limbo…maybe even have the negatives burned because the time spent trying to get this movie out in order to recoup their budget was greater than the effort to make a semi-interesting and engaging thriller.