The New Guy

All that can be said for “The New Guy” is that it has a sequence in which Eliza Dushku tries on a variety of swimsuits. Aside from that, you’re drowning in a sea of woeful incompetence, my friends.

The title character is Dizzy Gillespie Harrison, played by DJ Qualls, who is freakishly thin and unsettling to look at. (He knows this; he earns movie roles because of it. Good for him.) Dizzy is a teen-age nerd who meets a prisoner (Eddie Griffin) who tells him how to stop being picked on: Get expelled and start over at a different school.

He succeeds at this, and when he shows up at raucous Highland High (their mascot: the Highlanders), he has an all-new, all-bad persona. He’s Gil Harris now, and don’t mess with him. He impresses the school vixen (Eliza Dushku) by punching out her boyfriend and also catches the eye of the school tramp (Sunny Mabrey).

Also, he turns his back on his old nerd friends, but that conflict gets resolved pretty easily, so I’m going to pretend it never happened.

Then Gil’s inner nice guy shines through, and he uses his new-found influence to turn Highland into a beacon of school spirit and pleasantness.

Even for one of those stupid teen movies that aren’t very funny, this one isn’t very funny. It is too far removed from reality: Nothing that occurs in the movie would ever happen in real life, and even if it did, people wouldn’t react the way they do here. When Gil’s motorcycle won’t start, his friends tie it to the back of a car, take off, and play a tape of motorcycle noises ‹ thus successfully fooling bystanders into thinking the bike was working on its own power.

It is occasionally loud and offensive, but more often, it simply lulls you into a gentle waking coma. It is an obvious and strange film, full of cameos by people who cannot act (Lyle Lovett, Gene Simmons, Tommy Lee, Tony Hawk, etc.), thus giving the impression of being an especially bad community theater production.

F (; PG-13, a lot of profanity, some sexual dialogue,.)