If you haven't noticed, "Sydney White" ('07) has been added to Netflix.
When I saw it, I watched it and was reminded of how much I loved this movie back when it came out.
Seriously, if you haven't seen it, you need to, and if you have seen it, it's a great movie to watch again and live in the nostalgia of the days before Amanda Bynes went crazy.
It wasn't until I watched it a few days later with my friends who had never seen it before (who remind me of my own group of dorks) did I realize just how wrong and stereotypical this movie is about life in college.
1. The Sorority
The biggest inaccuracy in this movie is probably the Kappa Phi Nu Sorority.
Yes, there may always be a Rachel Witchburn wherever we turn, but there aren't entire sororities made of them. Actually, from the friends I've made at the College of Charleston who are in a sorority, none of them are anything like Rachel and her clique, but that doesn't mean they don't exist.
I myself may not be in a sorority, but I know you're not given a bid based on how pretty you are.
I also know that once you are given a bid, as a pledge, you are not hazed. It doesn't matter what they call it, Sydney and the other pledges were definitely hazed and that wouldn't fly.
Especially the close examination of their faces, judging the pledges and dictating what they are and are not allowed to eat. That's just straight up bullying.
Also, I don't think pledges sleep on the floor of the floor of the sorority house and give up their dorm rooms to live in the house.
2. "The Greeks" rule the school
No institution would ever allow "the Greeks" to have that much power in important campus-wide decision making.
The movie plays it up as Rachel Witchburn and Tyler Prince's (of Beta Omega Rho) families being the biggest patrons, but even then, they wouldn't have that much power.
I don't believe the Student Council can have that much power to say "knock down this to build that."
To be honest, I'm not exactly sure what the school's Student Council does (sorry), but I know it's not that influential.
3. The Vortex
As George (Dopey) put it, "it's called the Vortex because it sucks losers in." It's not so much the seven dorks who live in the Vortex that bother me, it's the building itself.
Seriously, how can the university just ignore the fact that this place is a literal death trap? Unsafe living conditions, bad plumbing, probably poor AC/heat as well.
And do the Dorks pay to live there?
You have to pay housing to live in a dorm and you have to pay fees to live in a sorority/fraternity house.
So, is the Vortex just so neglected that the school doesn't care either way if people live in it or not?
4. The stereotypes
Speaking of stereotypes, some of the ones presented in this movie were just straight up offensive to some communities.
Obviously, one is the greeks and how sororities are full of blonde, fake bitches who will ruin your lives and that the fraternities just have sex all of the time.
Although Tyler debunked that when he revealed to the Dorks that the guys at Beta also spend most of their time playing video games.
But, when Sydney and the Dorks start appealing to the other school clubs and organizations for the Freedom to the 7th Power campaign, we see a lot of these groups depicted as their stereotypes, in what is supposed to be shown as a montage of diversity, but instead, is just casual prejudice.
The Jewish Student Union, to start with, only showed Hasidic Jews with the Payot, dark clothing, various headdresses and Tallits. Obviously, they really focused in on one sect of Judaism and stuck with it, not showing that the Jewish community itself is also very diverse.
The part that really bothered the hell out of my one friend is when Sydney and the Dorks attended the Open Mic night with the LGBTQ+ Alliance.
But, they seem to have associated a Trans-person with a Drag Queen, which is absolutely wrong and also very offensive. I get that this movie came out in 2007, and there was an aura of ignorance when it came to the LGBTQ+ community, but still.
Not to mention the other organizations she visited that were completely stereotypes and I'm sure, in return, offended the people who belong to those groups, but that whole montage had so much going on, I couldn't even tell.
5. The Hot-or-Not List
This would never ever happen on a college campus!
Maybe in high school, where you know at least the majority of the people that go there (small school vs. large school), but not on a campus with 10,000+ students.
The school featured in the movie, Southern Atlantic University, seems like a huge university.
Yes, Rachel WItchburn may have been super popular, but there's no way the entire school kept voting for her to be #1 for years!
Plus, who the hell would care about something like that in college vs. high school?
Well, Rachel Witchburn, I guess.
6. Everything just seemed too perfect
I wish Move-In Day was as organized, stress-free and happy as they show in the movie.
SAU must have a lot of parking spaces because they depict it as the entire school moving in at once. And everyone just looks so happy about lugging these boxes!
Sydney literally only moves in with 3 bags: a duffle bag filled with clothes, a backpack, which I hope have her toiletries in and a huge ass briefcase just for her comic books!
Where is the stuff for her room like sheets? Is that sleeping bag her own or did Kappa lend her it?
Then there's the library scene! When Tyler and his Beta Boys come in singing Accapella to Sydney to get her to go out on a date with him. This would never happen, or maybe it would, but he'd be banned from the library or something. They were so loud and these poor students were just trying to do their work and study.
Nobody ever even comes up to him and tells him to shut up — the Greeks can't have so much power they're immune!
While this movie may be completely inaccurate and horribly offensive, it teaches that you should not judge a book by its cover and you should band together to stand up to your oppressors. It teaches that we can find friendship in the strangest of circumstances.
If this movie was made today, half the stuff in it would not fly, but we can watch it for nostalgic purposes and enjoy it for what it is.