The Girl I Want (1990)

The Girl I Want (1990)

Judging from “The Girl I Want,” all of life’s problems can be solved by watching Linnea Quigley and Karen Russell dancing and bouncing up and down on a bed for ten minutes set to rock music. I know that’s not the point of “The Girl I Want,” but I was entranced by Quigley and Russell flexing, bouncing, jiggling, and dancing for the screen for no apparent reason. Not that there ever has to be.

“The Girl I Want” is ultimately two narratives. One is about a geeky but very pretty girl named Amy, who turns to two of the hottest girls in her high school to help her get an image make over. She can’t talk to guys, so she figures the girls thought of as the “sluttiest” will know how to turn her personality around. And then there’s the narrative involving Amy’s love interest Scott, who is attempting to study for a big test and spends an immense amount of time with his best friend. Thanks to badly phrased sentences and wacky misunderstandings, Scott’s dad thinks his son might be homosexual.

Burt Ward plays Scott’s dad, eventually declaring “Holy homosexual!” Obviously, it’s typical eighties misogyny and homophobia, but it still makes for a quirky and easy to watch piece of junk food. Elizabeth Cayton operates the film based on her charms and girl next door appeal, providing a performance around her quirks and geekiness hiding her obvious good looks. Her endless fantasies and inner monologues are a bit droning at times, but they give us a picture in to her warped mind.

You assume a girl like her would be happy with just being herself, but surely enough she has to change her entire image to fit her idea of sex appeal. It’s tough for Cayton, who takes center stage, as co-stars Linnea Quigley and Karen Russell steal the movie away from her more times than you can count. Not only do their characters provide more interesting back stories, but their family lives were also much more comical. There’s also Victoria Nesbitt who plays Quigley’s cougar mother, and Kitten Natividad as a sexy spanish teacher. “The Girl I Want” is by no means a masterpiece, but as shameless sex-centric eighties fodder, it’s worthy of a watch.