Reviews

Role Models

4

The key to timeless comedy: kids swearing…

David Wain, the user-friendliest member of manic US comedy troupe The State, took a punt at reinventing the raunchy ’80s teen comedy with 2001’s surreal Wet Hot American Summer, trading all-nude shower scenes for extra-terrestrial telekinesis and penis jokes for… well, he kept the penis jokes.

Although he’s reined himself in for Role Models, fans of juvenile rudery can relax – it’s a carnival of kicks to the balls and four-letter outbursts.
Paul Rudd (who co-wrote with Wain) and Seann William Scott are Danny and Wheeler, two mismatched pitch-men for a chemicalladen energy drink who end up, via a caffeine-fuelled freak-out, facing a spot of jail time.

They wiggle out by volunteering to mentor a couple of misfits: Ronnie (Bobb’e J Thompson) – a breast-obsessed 10-year-old with a filthy mouth – and Augie Farks (Superbad scenestealer Christopher Mintz-Plasse) – a dreamer who spends his time preparing for an upcoming Live-Action Roleplay (LARP) battle.

The set-up is pure buddy-movie convention, but the film zags into an anarchic war of wills between the dumbed-down adults and the wily kids. For most of the film’s running time, Wain refuses to give in to mush or melodrama, preferring to prod hopelessly dysfunctional characters into uneasy duels, just to see who blinks first.

The initial meetings are delicious disasters, taking in stolen cars, wounded feelings and one extremely awkward camping trip. The cast is good enough to make it all seem like snarky improv, especially Paul Rudd as a suit-wearing nihilist who’s so emotionally disengaged from the world around him that he attempts to repair his fractured relationship with his girlfriend (Elizabeth Banks) by mumbling TV advert soundbites at her.

There are the expected last-minute changes-of-heart, but for the most part, Role Models is positively grinchy – and all the funnier for it.

Ken McIntyre

Film Details

User Reviews

    • bobotron

      Jan 11th 2009, 14:39

      2

      full of American humor cliches. good casting of weird characters. Sean William Scott is dreadful! he plays the same American pie character in every film!!! for God sake is like 35 years old!

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    • mrmojo76

      Jan 27th 2009, 23:39

      3

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    • thedarkknight

      Feb 19th 2009, 8:53

      5

      Sean William Scott is hilarious! He works so well with Paul Rudd in this movie, and although it is essentially his "American Pie" character, he plays it well.

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    • thedarkknight

      Feb 19th 2009, 8:54

      5

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    • avfc4eva

      Mar 18th 2009, 17:57

      4

      Although a bit far fetched and predictable, this movie is very entertaining. Paul Rudd's perfect comic timing and sarcasm makes him the most entertaining and funniest comedic actor working at the moment. I look forward to seeing him take on leading roles in the future.

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    • ROLLERGIRL76

      Mar 26th 2009, 17:02

      4

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    • Phoenix81

      May 7th 2009, 14:05

      3

      Rudd is hilarious, so dry... How funny is the big battle game as well - Brilliant!! Oh yeah the film is alright too :o)

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    • thekillingjoke

      May 21st 2009, 17:38

      4

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    • jacoblost48

      Nov 28th 2009, 18:44

      3

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