Everything You Want
I hope you’re thinking about calling me.

Release Date: 04/25/2006 (DVD)
Director: Ryan Little
Cast: Shiri Appleby, Nick Zano, Alexandra Holden, Orlando Seale

In the tradition of made for TV (in this case ABC Family), innocuous, young romance cinema about a girl apparently too beautiful to have found her soul mate, I submit to you the review for “Everything You Want”.

One of my greatest weaknesses, next to kryptonite and the Monte Cristo sandwich, is Shiri Appleby. From the moment I laid eyes on the teen sci-fi show “Roswell” while in college, she had me at “Please stop calling me, how did you get my number?”.

In this film, she plays an aspiring artist with a slacker roommate (Alexandra Holden) and she’s had the same boyfriend (Orlando Seale) since she was five years old. As impressive and sweet as that may be, there’s a hitch: he’s not real.

Coping with neglectful and otherwise useless parents, Appleby resorted to inventing someone to keep her company. As fate, and a terrifically pedestrian script, would have it, she’s held onto him all these years – allowing him to become the emotional crutch keeping her from experiencing true love. Sadly though, that true love comes in the form of Nick Zano. He’s the stereotypical frat guy (without the frat), the kind of jerk in college who’s just good looking enough for women not to care what’s going on inside his head or coming out of his mouth.

Like any predictable college romantic comedy, he has a stoner roommate for plucky comic relief. And somehow, this waste of space can choose to focus on a task, even though he’s smoked himself retarded by this point in his life. So, sometimes it’s a reliable wingman, more often than not you get an absent-minded and hazy lump of skin.

As you might imagine, none of the comedy really works … but at least it’s pleasant. I appreciate that the filmmakers didn’t resort to cheap, gross-out jokes just to pander to the audience (being on ABC Family’s dime probably had a big effect on this). The romantic element of the film fails as well though – as it’s unclear why, other than corporeal existence, Appleby is better off with the jerk rather than the polite, British figment of her imagination.

The other contributing factors of the film are just as plain. There’s nothing spectacular to speak of from a production standpoint other than how they were able to get Borders to sign off on using of their stores as Appleby’s workplace. Exposure is great, but you’d think they’d want a better film to place their brand on.

In any case, I’m sure by now you’ve realized I’m not going to be overly kind here … but I’m inclined to be, nonetheless. I’m giving “Everything You Want” a 2 out of 5. As a film, it deserves another hit to its rating – but at least it doesn’t quite offend you with it’s crappiness. It’s a sweet film, best viewed for free on cable whenever you happen to be too far away from the remote to change it. Though of course, I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt because of Appleby … I am so sad. (Call me).