Ari Sandel’s film is an unabashedly feel-good comedy about one young woman’s journey from insecurity to self-acceptance that patrols the same high school corridors as She’s All That, Clueless, Mean Girls and 10 Things I Hate About You.
One tomboy isn’t fussed about attending her school’s rites-of-passage prom because she already has a date in front of the TV.
The devoted horror fan is Bianca (Mae Whitman), who attends parties with friends Jess (Skyler Samuels) and Casey (Bianca A Santos), oblivious to the fact she is the D.U.F.F. - Designated Ugly Fat Friend.
When her neighbour, hunky athlete Wesley (Robbie Amell), who is dating the school’s queen bee Madison (Bella Thorne), opens Bianca’s eyes to the upsetting truth, she resolves to transform from an ugly duckling in order to land a date with her dream beau, Toby (Nick Eversman).
The Duff is a heartfelt and frequently hilarious traipse through teenage angst, anchored by a luminous central performance from Whitman.
Colourful supporting turns from Ken Jeong and Romany Malco up the laughter quotient to the brink of hysteria.