"Honesty and Sincerity Are Not Enough"
What You Need To Know:
JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE has some entertaining twists and appealing characters, but otherwise is pretty forgettable. The plot deals with the games that teenagers play on one another while dating. The movie promotes honesty and kindness, but it does so in a pagan atmosphere that accepts the idea of teenagers getting romantically involved. It also tries to get many laughs from the rampant sexual activity that, regrettably, goes on in too many American high schools.
(PaPa, B, Ho, AP, LLL, SS, N, MM) Strong pagan worldview includes pagan content about finding true romance in high school, jokes about sex, revenge motif but with a sense of giving a teenage cad the same medicine he dishes out to unsuspecting girls, and foul language, mitigated by some light moral elements extolling honesty, sincerity, kindness, being true to oneself, and purity (to a point) with an insightful admonition, however, that even a mean, licentious or evil person can be sincere about their immorality so honesty and sincerity are not enough, plus homosexual reference when girl shows another girl how to kiss a guy and negative depictions of Americans; 20 obscenities, 10 light exclamatory profanities, girl starts to say an “f” word, and boys pass gas in locker room; comic violence includes slapping and fight with cake; light and strong sexual content includes movie implies protagonist’s mother sleeps with a series of boyfriends, verbal references to “hooking up” and oral sex, teenage girl on Internet shows teenage boy live video of the sexy red bra she’s wearing and intices him to come to her hotel room wearing female thong underwear but she tricks him into going to the room of the female cheerleading coach, comical references to supporting character’s slutty behavior, teenage girl shows another girl how to kiss a boy but another boy gets excited seeing them kiss and asks to see more, and teenage boy brags in locker room about his plans to get sex from new girlfriend; rear male nudity, partial rear nudity as people are seen wearing thong underwear under their clothes, and teenage girl in red bra and panties; no alcohol use; no smoking; and, revenge motif, deceit, lying, humiliation, girl complains to mother about mother’s behavior with men, and vegetarian character.
In JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE, Kate, the new girl at Forest Hills High School, discovers that the captain of the basketball team, John Tucker, has cheated on three of the most beautiful girls in school. Kate tells the three girls that they need to get even with John and teach him a lesson. They ask Kate to help them get even, but all their plans backfire when John is able to spin, in his favor, their schemes to embarrass him.
The three girls then cook up a plan to give Kate a popularity makeover to attract John Tucker. The plan is to break John’s heart like he broke theirs. Kate starts to have qualms, however, as John seems to become more honest with his emotions. Another fly in the ointment is the fact that John’s brother, Scott, is a much nicer guy who’s clearly attracted to Kate.
JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE deals with the games that teenagers in high school play on one another. It promotes more honesty and kindness, but it does so in a pagan atmosphere that accepts the idea of teenagers getting romantically involved. It also tries to get many laughs from the sexual activity that, regrettably, goes on in too many American high schools. For example, there are several jokes about one of the girls being too indulgent of John’s sexual desires. Also, one of Kate’s tricks on John involves getting him to wear women’s panties.
At the end, however, honesty is upheld, Kate confesses and John seems to learn his lesson. The denouement after the climax points out, however, that honesty and sincerity are still not enough. Thus, although John learns to be more honest, the movie makes it clear that he still wants to play the field. The movie could have taken advantage of this point and said something about the importance of sexual purity and other moral values in building character, but it doesn’t. Media-wise families, however, will teach their children and teenagers that honesty and sincerity must be accompanied by a set of biblical values and principles that include many other virtues.
All and all, JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE has some entertaining twists and appealing characters, but otherwise is pretty forgettable.