Well hey there guys and gals. Welcome to the first ever edition of THROWBACK THURSDAY here on DSB!! (In case anyone’s confused, this will basically be replacing the subsections up top that are ‘1990s’ and ‘2000s.’) So from now on, you might/should/would/could expect a new update each Thursday that will discuss a film from back in the day. Seeing as though I couldn’t come up with something more original for the title, I am going to fall in line with the trend of “TBT,” having pressured myself into coming up with a new thread of some sort. And here we are.
Really, though, I’d like to give a shout out to my buddy Mike Hallman for reminding me of this appropriate new social trend, since it fits quite well with reviewing older titles. Hopefully this will be a theme I can stick with for as long as this blog shall stand, and I look forward to many healthy discussions (or unhealthy…whatever) about these little bits and pieces of our youth.
Today’s food for thought: Eurotrip.
Release: February 1, 2003
Written by : Jeff Schaffer; Alec Berg; David Mandel
Directed by: Jeff Shaffer; Alec Berg; David Mandel
Four high school grads spend their summer before college wandering around the streets of Europe searching for fun, freedom and a newfound sense of adulthood in their impromptu adventures. Scotty (Scott Mechlowicz) strikes up an online relationship with someone named Mieke, who is helping him pass his German studies course so he will be able to graduate on time. After a hilarious misunderstanding over the true identity of his email-pal, Scotty and friends Cooper (Jacob Pitts), Jenny (Michelle Trachtenberg), and Jamie (Travis Wester) head to Berlin in order to set things straight, along the way finding plenty of trouble to get into…and just barely enough to allow this film to get by without wearing out its welcome.
Of course, this is a teen movie we’re talking about. Expect no Oscar nominations here. Maybe a Razzie for Most Awkward Brother-Sister Romance, sure. . . (remember that scene where Jenny and Jamie drank Absinthe and then made out? Yeah, I know….gross.) Moments like that abound in this barely-ninety minute romp, and are trademark of the teen comedy genre. In Eurotrip, it’s a strategy that has a 50% success rate. When these over-the-top silly gags work, it’s great; when they misfire, it’s cringe-inducing and awkward.
Some examples of it working include the crazed Manchester United soccer….er, excuse me, football fan club sequences; Cooper’s traumatizing experience at a hostile hostel; and stumbling upon a French nude beach and finding it full of only males.
Now the bad: the group’s detour into Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia, is simply awful and ultimately a major time-waster; as well, one of the last scenes where we are in the Vatican hunting down this girl who Scotty’s been searching after for all this time is completely ridiculous and cheesy. It’s probably the movie’s cheesiest moment and a rather dull way to round out our European road trip.
Having said all that, Eurotrip is not asking for you to take it all that seriously; the actors/actresses sure don’t seem like they are (or were), either. Each of their performances comes across as barely sufficient evidence that they’ve recited their parts. No one is particularly memorable (nor despicable, for that matter really) and there’s but a few familiar road signs along the way that point to things like Road Trip, certain National Lampoon entries, and Harold & Kumar. This Western European version is a little less successful than those, and only mildly distances itself from a slew of other similarly themed, sexually-frustrated directions that were big on jokes and light on logic.
Recommendation: If you forget to pack your brain for this adventure, that’s how you’d be best prepared for Eurotrip. It’s no smart comedy, but it’s outrageous gags, carefree spirit and use of several famous landmarks blends together for a fairly enjoyable experience. And, truly, what more do you need from a B-list comedy than simply having some fun at the expense of the main characters?
Running Time: 89 mins.
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Photo credits: http://www.imdb.com