Since her first big turn as the dowdy Ann Veal in Arrested Development, Mae Whitman has emerged a solid actor with a ton of successful items on her resume. But, that’s of no concern whatsoever when considering her role in upcoming comedy, The Duff. While the actress doesn’t prescribe to the hyper-perfect aesthetic of many women in the industry, she’s not what I would term a ‘designated ugly fat friend’ – a label attached to the character she plays in Ari Sandel’s comedy.
With the launch of the first trailer, it seems the entire plot of the comedy hinges on Whitman’s good nature over her derided high schooler, Bianca. In an uninspired mash-up of Mean Girls and She’s All That, the poor lass discovers that her teenage experience isn’t as perfect as she’d hoped. Learning that she is the Duff of her group, Bianca seeks help from shallow jock Wesley to shed her image.
To be honest, the premise is reliant on two ridiculous factors that perpetuate terrible ideals for young women. First off, there’s the idea that Whitman is ugly and fat. She’s neither. And second of all, the notion that a true nerd is only worthy when they attempt to pretty themselves up to appeal to popular twerps. Am I missing the point of the film? I don’t know. I struggle with both concepts, but you might be able to ignore them.
The Duff opens in theatres on February 19th, 2015.
Bianca (Mae Whitman) is a content high school senior whose world is shattered when she learns the student body knows her as ‘The DUFF’ (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) to her prettier, more popular friends (Skyler Samuels & Bianca Santos). Now, despite the words of caution from her favorite teacher (Ken Jeong), she puts aside the potential distraction of her crush, Toby (Nick Eversman), and enlists Wesley (Robbie Amell), a slick but charming jock, to help reinvent herself. To save her senior year from turning into a total disaster, Bianca must find the confidence to overthrow the school’s ruthless label maker Madison (Bella Thorne) and remind everyone that no matter what people look or act like, we are all someone’s DUFF.
Source: The Playlist