10 things I love about ‘10 Things I Hate About You’


Courtesy Disney+

Staff Writer Leann Jenks states that the classic film “10 Things I Hate About You” is a funny, yet relatable film that provides as a perfect comfort movie.

Leann Jenks, Staff Writer

The classic 90’s romantic comedy, “10 Things I Hate About You”, directed by Gil Junger, never fails to provide a good laugh and some comfort, still holding up 23 years later. 

Based on Shakespreare’s comedy “The Taming of the Shrew”, “10 Things I Hate About You” tells the story of two teenaged sisters, social butterfly Bianca (Larisa Oleynik) and ill-tempered Kat (Julia Stiles), whose protective father decides that Bianca may only date when Kat does—an unlikely scenario given Kat’s antisocial behavior. Cameron (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), who is quickly infatuated with Bianca after his first day at his new high school, schemes to pay Patrick (Heath Ledger), a mysterious rebel whose ideology clearly conflicts with Kat’s, to take Kat out on a date, therefore allowing Bianca to date as well. The film’s title is based on a poem Kat writes describing the ups and downs of her romance with Patrick. 

So what do I love about “10 Things I Hate About You”?

I love Kat’s character. She avoids all of the rite of passages that come along with being a popular high school student who is eager to fit in. Although the movie portrays her as “the shrew,” according to Cameron’s friend Michael (David Krumholtz), she is much more than that, and I utterly agree. Underneath her angry exterior, the viewer can see her maturity, intelligence and thoughtfulness shine through, which becomes more evident as the movie goes on. When in doubt, you can count on Kat’s character to provide honesty, spice and a little comedy.

I love how the age gap between Bianca and Kat is evident. In “10 Things I Hate About You,” Bianca is the definition of a sophomore: naive and eager to fit in. On the other hand, Kat, a senior, has embraced her uniqueness and maturity. Similar to the typical high school experience today, students begin by doing everything in their power to blend in, but leave striving to be their own person. 

I love Bianca’s character development. Although her development isn’t the focus of the movie, the viewer can still follow along as she turns from a rude and selfish teenager (Hmm, perhaps she is the shrew?) into a thoughtful, more sophisticated version of herself while still maintaining the child-like characteristics that makes her so relatable. 

I love the depiction of their public high school. It is full of all the things you would expect: cliques, scattered guidance counselors and antagonistic jocks. The movie does not try to romanticize the perfect high school like many other teenage movies do, but rather paints the picture of an imperfect experience, similar to many students’ experiences today. 

I love the soundtrack. Packed with classics like “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” and “Bad Reputation”, it fits perfectly with the vibe and is the cherry on top of an already great movie.

I love the way that the movie tackles issues more complex than its rom-com counterparts.  The movie takes a deeper look at how society handles women who are outspoken and opinionated through Kat’s character. Just expressing her opinion gets her sent to the office in class. Additionally, guys are appalled at the thought of dating “a difficult woman,” one even suggesting that he wouldn’t date Kat even if they are the last two people on earth, assuming there are sheep. She is continuously treated with disrespect and looked down upon by her peers, teachers and even family all because she is confident in her opinions and is not afraid to speak her mind. 

I love the classic ‘90s nostalgia that “10 Things I Hate About You” provides. Whether it be through the movie’s editing, the clothing, the soundtrack or simply some of the expressions characters use (such as “as if!” accompanied by an eye roll), this movie is a time capsule from 23 years ago. 

I love that there are no dry characters. Everyone has depth and adds something to the plot, whether it be humor, quirkiness or emotion. Even the guidance counselor, a typical static character in many other movies, adds comedic relief and definitely some peculiarity. 

I love the inclusion of completely random scenes. In the first half of the movie, Cameron’s friend Michael accidentally bikes off the cliff while the whole school watches him tumble over the edge just to get up a few seconds later victoriously pumping his fist as the students cheer. There are many other scenes like this that add no value to the plot, and are purely for comedic purposes to sporadically break up the movie, which adds nice variety as opposed to more typical romantic comedies that shy away from randomness. 

Mostly, I love the way I don’t hate this movie, not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all.

Yes, you need to have seen the movie to know what that last love of mine was all about, and, yes, in all honesty, this is not a life-altering movie. In fact, it is not really close to that. Some scenes are not realistic and can cross the border of being cliché. However, viewers do not always want a dose of reality or a thought-provoking plot that makes them rethink life. Rather, “10 Things I Hate About You” is the ultimate comfort movie, providing comedic relief, emotion, entertainment and a feel-good ending. 

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