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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Cine Beaverhausen: Jennifer Lopez and The Boy Next Door

How can we ignore the boy next door when he's a psychotic drama queen? That is the burning question posed by J-Lo's latest star vehicle.

In The Boy Next Door, Jennifer Lopez is separated from her husband, hunky John Corbett (Northern Exposure, My Big, Fat Greek Wedding). Her good (but wayward) friend and neighbor is played by Kristin Chenoweth. Distraught and, well, frankly, just plain horny, she has a one-night affair with the sexy high school senior (Ryan Guzman) -- who, from his appearance, has obviously been held back a few years -- living next door.  ("I got swept up in the moment! I was vulnerable!")

Jennifer is an English teacher. "What do you teach?" "The classics!" Kristin's the school's vice-principal. Love her line about J-Lo: "She's a lot of laughs. You've just got to get to know her."

After Ms Lopez's one-night stand, it immediately becomes obvious Boy has a screw or two ot three or all four loose. Obviously, things escalate and get very ugly, with a very violent climax. While Ms Lopez may have thought this would be another Fatal Attraction, it is, unfortunately, not even The Hand That Rocks the Cradle. And Jennifer proves she's no Annabella Sciorra. "You think you can scare me with some graffiti on the wall?"

The film may be a minor camp classic-to-be of sorts not despite, but because of, its jaw-dropping awfulness. It's a hoot! Directed with no particular sense of style by Rob Cohen.

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