FRIDAY NIGHT MOVIE REVIEW: Last night, I saw “Sierra Burgess is a Loser,” which stars Shannon Purser (Stranger Things [TV series], Wish Upon), Kristine Froseth (Junior [TV series], Apostle), RJ Cyler (Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Power Rangers ), Noah Centineo (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, The Fosters [TV series]), Loretta Devine (Crash, Grey’s Anatomy [TV series), Giorgia Whigham (The Punisher [TV series], Chance [TV series]), Alice Lee (Take Two [TV series], Gap Year [TV mini-series]), Lea Thompson (Back to the Future, Howard the Duck), and Alan Ruck (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Twister). It is directed by Ian Samuels (Myrna the Monster [Short], Caterwaul [Short]) and written by Lindsey Beer (Chaos Walking, Masters of the Universe). Sierra Burgess (Purser), an unpopular “low-life” in high school, is mistaken for the school’s preppy hotter girl Veronica (Froseth) via text when Veronica gives a guy Burgess’ number instead of her own. Falling in love with the boy, Burgess is afraid if she reveals her true identity he would leave her, sending her on a wild adventure of a secret being kept as long as it can.
You gotta love those good ol’ fashioned teen flicks on the positive affects of cat-fishing. Really, Netflix made a great gamble on this; and to have that one girl who played Barb on “Stranger Things” be the driving vehicle of it? Even better (she gets the recognition she deserves, I guess). I’m an old soul and have been for quite a bit of my life, so teen movies on relationships and whatnot have never garnered my interest. However, I’d like to think that most people who watched this feature found it to be completely empty, void of anything meaningful or worth the click (boy, when “worth the price of admission” was a thing). You see, Sierra Burgess isn’t just a loser, but a weirdo at that. I understand how she feels about herself; she doesn’t think that the man who has been texting her (believing she’s someone else) would like her if they were to talk face-to-face. But… to go the lengths she did in faking her persona and having the woman the guy thinks he’s texting actually play along in this game is just messed up. I don’t know what was worse: watching this situation grow even more terrible or knowing that everything would miraculously get resolved by the end of the film (gotta have your happy ending, right?). It comes as no surprise what will be the outcome of this endeavor, yet it’s also so unbelievable that it couldn’t resist in reality. For a guy to be cat-fished by a woman and forgive her/fall in loved with her couldn’t be more unrealistic. And I watched it all come to a head… Granted, there’s quite a bit to enjoy in “Sierra Burgess is a Loser.” The acting is solid, the score is pretty cool, and the cinematography is alright (it’s nothing top-tier or groundbreaking, but it gets the job done). On top of that, I was also entertained by the pure silliness this movie presented itself in. To go the distance with this concept is funny enough; how did this get picked up? It’s not as awful an idea as “The Room,” but it couldn’t be more empty in its theme. Essentially, what I learned was my bad actions don’t have bad consequences. If I were to message a girl claiming I was someone else then get caught, she’d fall in love with me anyway. I guess that’s how this world works (or at least the one in this movie). I wanted to like these characters and empathize with them, but I really couldn’t. Some of the writing did work in regards to realistic dialogue spoken in casual settings (she seemed to figure how actual teenagers would talk rather than what most Hollywood elites think), but where the story was going couldn’t be avoided. Everything moved with the story to get to this happy end destination, and I didn’t care for it. While you’ll find “Sierra Burgess is a Loser” to be a light, entertaining watch due to its witty performances and sleek look, you’ll soon realize that your time is wasted on an empty conclusion clearly forced by a lazy writer. FINAL SCORE: 42%= Burnt Popcorn
Here is the trailer: