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Road Trip   C+

DreamWorks Pictures

Year Released: 2000
MPAA Rating: R
Director: Todd Phillips
Writers: Todd Phillips, Scot Armstrong
Cast: Breckin Meyer, Seann William Scott, Amy Smart, Rachel Blanchard, Paulo Costanzo, DJ Qualls, Fred Ward, Tom Green.

Review by Michael Scrutchin

Road Trip will likely fill audiences' appetites for a second helping of something like last year's clever teen sex comedy American Pie. For the most part, Road Trip is exactly what it aspires to be -- a raunchy and amusing time-waster peppered with tasteless gross-out gags and (get this!) the welcome return of gratuitous nudity to the teen sex comedy.

As narrated by University of Ithica tour guide Barry (Tom Green), the plot follows an ordinary frat guy named Josh (Breckin Meyer), who has been in a lifelong relationship with his girlfriend Tiffany (Rachel Blanchard). But she's off at college in Austin, and one night Josh gives in to temptation and has sex with a campus sexpot named Beth (Amy Smart). Oh, yeah, and they videotape it -- and he accidentally sends it his girlfriend.

So Josh and his buddies E.L. (Seann William Scott) and Rubin (Paulo Costanzo) decide to take a road trip to Austin, hoping to intercept the tape before it gets to Tiffany. But they have to bring the geeky virgin Kyle (DJ Squalls) along because he's the only one among them that has a car. Their buddy Barry stays on campus and tries to feed Rubin's pet snake while they're gone.

While Road Trip is frequently entertaining, its humor is cheap and predictable for the most part. It's not nearly as funny or smart as last year's American Pie, and Road Trip's characters never really come to life. Sure, Seann William Scott seems to be having a lot of fun, essentially reprising his role as Stiffler from American Pie, but the rest of the cast and characters are, well, pretty bland. Tom Green (psycho comic from MTV's Tom Green Show) is always a riot, and although his performance here is somewhat restrained, he provides some of the film's biggest laughs.

As directed by Todd Phillips -- the young filmmaker behind the controversial documentary Frat House -- Road Trip is fun and raunchy enough to please its target audience (mostly guys aged 16 to 24), but it's too bad it had to play it safe a take the road most-traveled. I laughed a few times during Road Trip, but not nearly as much as I should have. Guys will also rejoice at the occasional female nudity (you get to see Amy Smart topless!). But, ladies, there's also a surprise in store for you: you get to see Tom Green's bum-bum!

Review published 05.26.2000.

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