Director: Deb Hagan
Cast: Gary Owens, Ryan Pinkston, Drake Bell,
Kevin Covais, Andrew Caldwell, Haley Bennett, Nick Zano, Camille
RunTime: 1 hr 34 mins
Released By: Cathay-Keris Films
Rating: M18 (Mature Theme)
Official Website: http://www.college-themovie.com/
Opening Day: 1 January 2009
A new outrageous comedy, "College" is the story
of three high school seniors (Drake Bell, Andrew Caldwell
and Kevin Covais) who visit a local college campus as prospective
freshman anticipating the best weekend of their lives. Once
there, the rowdiest fraternity on campus (featuring Nick Zano,
Gary Owen and Zach Cregger) decides to recruit the boys as
pledges, subjecting them to endless humiliations, in return
for granting them access to the no-holds-barred college party
scene. But once the boys catch the eye of some of the older
sorority girls (Haley Bennett, Camille Mana and Natalie Walker),
the threatened Frat-boys increase the pre-frosh humiliation
and blackmail them by threatening to expose their age. The
boys decide to fight back, retaliating with a major revenge
scheme that lands them on top. What
began as the weekend-from-hell turns into the BEST. WEEKEND.
I suppose the American teenage sex comedies never get out of fashion, and for every hit that makes it to the big screen, there are countless others that go straight to the home video market. College unfortunately turns out to be one of those that managed to slip through quality control and ended up with an outing on the big screen.
You know the formula these days already, given the number of films from the genre adopting it. First the characters - you'll need to gather the magic number of 3, with the protagonist, usually somewhat normal looking, and nothing extreme because we're supposed to identify with him, and to allow for some contrast with his buddies. Then throw in the fat guy, and make him loud mouthed, with the spewing of vulgarities a must. Lastly, the evergreen nerd. Put some glasses on him, make him talk proper, and become the butt end of most jokes, either caused by external parties, or by the fat kid.
Look at Superbad and you'll see what I mean. At least somehow there's a character in McLovin to have made it somewhat memorable. The same type of casting got repeated in Drillbit Taylor, and now, replicated in this high school / college film. And don't get me started on the story too, because it's still stuck in the insipid plot of having sex-crazed and booze-guzzling teenagers out looking for a good time packed in what they would like to think of as a dirty weekend.
Kevin (Drake Bell), Carter (Andrew Caldwell) and Morris (Kevin Covais) are three high school kids who make a road trip to Fieldmont University after a mutual friend recounts his weekend at college filled with crazy booze-filled partying and sexual escapades with three different girls. Kevin wants to get back at his girlfriend Gina (Alona Tal) who ditched him because he's boring, Morris has to get there because of a scholarship interview, and Carter just wants in on the fun. They pick the wrong fraternity house to gain sympathy accommodation, and needless to say, get picked on by the bucket-loads in order to protect their identities.
So cue in some toilet humour, plenty of anonymous actresses flashing their headlights at the screen, and the usual frat boy jokes that get played on the trio, before they decide to do a revenge of the nerds. In the meantime, the boys try to hook up with another trio of girls who happen to be in and around the same crazy parties as they do - Heather (Camille Mana) who happens to take a liking for alpha-nerd Morris, Amy (Nathalie Walker) who can't resist Carter's trash talking, and Kevin in a tussle with Teague (Nick Zano) over the affections of Kendall (Haley Bennett - remember Buddha's Delight in Music and Lyrics?)
As a comedy, the jokes fall really flat, and you'll only enjoy it if you think peppering every dialogue with loud profanity is funny. Shouting, swearing and incessantly hitting someone in the genitals, or miming explicit sex acts are very juvenile ways of trying to elicit mirth. And you can see the desperation in the filmmakers with trying to craft a new Stifler out of the Bearcat (Gary Owen) character, or engaging Mini-Me Verne Troyer in a stupid cameo, which again fell back on middle fingers and pointless dialogue.
It's not that I'm stand-offish, but I would really recommend to hit the other movies slated for New Year's Day, than to waste time with this absolutely unfunny stinker.
(Same old characters, same old premise)
Review by Stefan Shih