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Road Trip

Road Kill

By Jacob Beniflah

Staff Writer

Written by Todd Phillips, Scot Armstrong

Directed by Todd Phillips

Starring Brecking Meyer, Rachel Blanchard, Seann William Scott, Amy Smart, Paulo Costanza

Running time: 91 minutes

Rated: R

Bored this summer? Want to remind yourself what college is supposed to be like according to Hollywood? Do you want to learn the Rules of Cheating? DreamWorks’ newest comedy Road Trip just might fulfill your desire.

Set at Ithaca University, Road Trip is the story of four students’ 1,800-mile trek to Austin, Texas. The reason for the long journey is anything but innocent. Barry (Tom Green), a tour guide for the university, narrates the saga several years after the epic trip.

Josh (Breckin Meyer) has a long-standing relationship with Tiffany (Rachel Blanchard) who attends veterinary school in Austin. Josh enjoys making videotapes of himself professing his love for Tiffany, which he sends to her. Josh, however, gets frustrated. He is unable to speak to his beloved girl for several days. So, Josh goes to a frat party and date auction held by his best friend E.L. (Sean Scott).

At this party, Josh “purchases” Beth (Amy Smart) and their relationships furthers a step more -- right into Josh’s bedroom. Beth finds a video camera in the room and, of course, decides to tape their encounter. All is well until the next morning Josh discovers that his friends accidentally mailed the tape of his passionate night to Austin. Tiffany then calls to explain she hadn’t called because her grandmother died. What else is there to do but drop everything and drive to Austin?

After securing a car from the Kyle (DJ Qualls), the group sets out with pothead Rubin (Paul Costanzo). Of course, the journey to Austin will be anything but simple. Josh has a philosophy midterm in three days, and to no one’s surprise, he must do well in order to pass the class. Kyle’s dad is in hot pursuit, and Beth is looking for Josh in Austin.

It’s obvious that comedic antics will ensue. Barry stays behind at the university and provides the trademark Tom Green humor -- random and shocking. Occasionally the story’s attention shifts to him, providing some of the best laughs in the movie.

Those watching the movie just for Tom Green might be disappointed, as his role is not as a big as fans would like. People who abhor his show on MTV will hate him even more in this movie. Tom Green and Barry are undeniably the same person -- quirky, off-the wall, and obnoxious. For some this may be an incentive to see it.

Comedic relief is also provided by Josh’s friend E.L., who is consistently funny throughout the movie, particularly when he dispenses his life philosophies and teaches Josh the Rules of Cheating. “When you’re in a committed relationship and have sex with another person,” E.L. reveals, “it’s not cheating if you're in different area codes” and “It’s not cheating if you’re too wasted to remember it, because if you can’t remember it, it never really took place.” In his touching motivational speech to Josh, E.L. explains that, “The window of opportunity to drink and take advantage of young girls is getting smaller by the day.” His antics in the sperm bank is one of the highlights of the movie.

Though obvious from the trailers that this isn’t a quality movie, people who watch Road Trip will at least get a few good laughs. The style of humor is that of recent comedies There’s Something About Mary and American Pie. However, despite its genuine toilet humor, Road Trip is not as humorous. The extraneous use of naked girls and beer shows that this movie is not for one of refined tastes.

Overall this movie is funny -- but not funny enough. The movie isn’t meaningful. It’s not deep. It’s just absurd. If you have some free time, and you’ve seen the rest of the summer blockbusters, Road Trip is definitely good for a few matinee-priced laughs.