Saturday, November 8, 2008

Role Models

Leon casino,

Role Models will make you laugh with glee at its secretly sentimental treatment of male bonding. Finally a comedy that works without gross-out jokes (for the most part anyway) or having been produced or written by Judd Apatow. Although considering a couple of the cast members, Paul Rudd and Elizabeth Banks and Jane Lynch and Superbad dork Christopher Mintz-Plasse, are synonymous with Apatow it's not that much of a stretch to compare it to what has come out in the last year. For my money Role Models was not quite as funny as Superbad but much funnier than any of this year's yuckfests excluding Tropic Thunder. Specifically I mean films like Forgetting Sarah Marshall, The Promotion, Pineapple Express, anything Will Ferrellish.
Paul Rudd and Seann William Scott work for an energy drink company essentially pushing Minotaur enzymes to school kids. Scott is the stud and Rudd is the spud of the duo. Bad behavior results in community service to avoid jail, which brings the by now bickering pair to a Big Brother type org. Scott's kid is a hellion while Rudd has to deal with a medieval game playing lad. When the film was over I heard people in the audience talking about going to the Renaissance Fair after all the role playing that goes on in Role Models. There's also a running gag involving the group KISS that actually pays off quite nicely.
Role Models was directed by David Wain who also appears briefly as the guy who can't play the guitar. Wain has helmed cult comedy Wet Hot American Summer as well as The Ten, which was awful. Role Models works because the R-rated dialogue suits the characters and the story sends up PG-13 type conventions (like kids resolving issues with their parents). Rudd also contributed to the script.


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