|ROAD TRIP (2000)|
Seann William Scott
Mia Amber Davis
|"Are there any guys out there who are JUST NORMAL?!"|
|Time: 93 mins.|
Much like AMERICAN PIE was last year, ROAD TRIP is an ode to the crazy sex comedies of the 80s that merely catches the essence of those films without much of the heart. I should know since I grew up sneaking into movies like FAST TIMES and PORKY'S. At least the prudish nineties seem to be over. I'm generally not one for gratuitous nudity, but even I find it essential to movies of this sort. College is all about sex, drugs and rock-n-roll, at least in the movies, so when I go to a film like this I expect those aspects to be there. ROAD TRIP manages to accommodate those requirements with varying degrees of success. The story isn't at all original, but it gets the players from point A to point B in several amusing ways, so one can't complain all that much.
The film opens with the ever amusing Tom Green portraying a college tour guide. To enliven the tour, he tells a lively tale of love and adventure that occurred on the very campus they are walking around. Josh Parker (Meyer) is in love with his longtime girlfriend Tiffany (Blanchard), who is going to school in another state, but is feeling the constraints of a long distance relationship. He's interested in a local girl named Beth (Smart), but is unwilling to cheat on Tiffany. That is until he can't reach her for several days and is convinced by his friend E.L. (Scott) that she's probably sleeping with some other guy as they speak. Attracted to Beth, one thing leads to another and they end up having a wonderful night of sex, captured for all to see on videotape. When it's discovered that the tape was accidently mailed to Tiffany, who went home due to her grandfather's death, Josh and his buddies have 3 days to drive 1800 miles to retrieve it before she returns to school.
They convince the class geek Kyle (Qualls) to let them use his car and even let him come along. Once on the road, the gentlemen run into one problem after the next making their arrival in Texas before Tiffany somewhat doubtful. Not the brightest students on campus, they manage to blow up Kyle's car, steal a bus from a school for the blind, donate sperm for money, crash at an African American fraternity and even get Kyle laid. When Beth discovers Josh has a girlfriend, she is less than amused since she thought they had the beginnings of something special. Though she initially plans to cause trouble for him, in the end she saves his butt on several occasions, proving to him that she's the best girlfriend ever. Which is great because he and Tiffany decide to be just friends and use their college years as they are meant to be for sexual experimentation with multiple partners.
Beside the lack of any real story, what keeps ROAD TRIP from being a memorable sex romp is the casting. Breckin Meyer is likeable, but nothing to write home about and the rest of the foursome, with the exception of DJ Qualls, are overplayed and uninteresting. They manage to keep your attention, but just barely. There needed to be better characters or a better script to make you care about the outcome of the trip. The fact that they were never in any real danger doesn't help the situation. A little fear would have really goosed the film along. As for the rest of the crew, Amy Smart is sexy, funny and intelligent, something most ladies who bare their breasts in this type of film aren't able to pull off. Tom Green is Tom Green, which on a good day is pretty funny and though he has a small part he makes his screen time memorable, especially in the scene with the snake.
ROAD TRIP isn't a bad movie, it's just been done better. It relies more on the audiences good will than it should. A little poignancy or guilt would have gone a long way to give the story some added depth. As it stands, it was fun, but is not a movie I'll race out to see again.