It's not cheating when ....
In 1999 we got the riotous teen comedy "American Pie" which basically opened the flood gates for not only a series of sequels but a stream of teen comedies which revelled in crude jokes, nudity and sex. One of the better, but not great, teen comedies to come out following the success of "American Pie" was "Road Trip" a movie about the outrageous adventures of 4 college students desperately trying to get from Ithaca to Austin. It is by no means high brow stuff, in fact very little to "Road Trip" is clever as it revolves around one set piece gag after another. Some of those gags interlink and in fairness the storyline does have a purpose but "Road Trip" is very much a movie where you disengage your brain and enjoy the crude and sexual comedy that fills the journey.
As children Josh (Breckin Meyer - The Craft) and Tiffany (Rachel Blanchard) were best friends and ended up becoming boyfriend and girlfriend but when Josh headed off to Ithaca College and Tiffany to Austin college it made their romance a long distance problem. When Josh doesn't hear from Tiffany for several days he ends up sleeping with Beth (Amy Smart - Varsity Blues) who videos it on his camera, unfortunately for Josh that video accidentally gets posted to Tiffany rather than the one he planned to send her. Desperate to intercept the video before she sees it, Josh and his friends E.L. (Seann William Scott), Rubin (Paulo Costanzo - 40 Days and 40 Nights) and Kyle (DJ Qualls - The Core) embark on an 1800 mile road trip to Austin.
Whilst "Road Trip" is a movie which is all about one set piece gag after another it does have a point, a storyline which provides a vehicle for many of these moments of hilarity. As such we have the tale of Josh who thanks to his room mate needs to get to Austin to stop his long distance girlfriend watching a tape of him having a one night stand. And so we have the road trip which in classic style is littered with problems such as a vehicle which blows up, broken bridges and to add a modern twist stop off's to have sex, smoke drugs, steal busses and just about any other ludicrous scenario you can think of. Now whilst many of the issues can be foreseen it has to be said that "Road Trip" is not a completely predictable movie. Yes you can guess that there will be a happy ever after ending but such things as stopping off to donate sperm to make money, a stoned, Viagra taking grandfather and a whole separate tale of a snake and a mouse makes for a lot of surprises, stupid ones but also enjoyable ones.
What is good is that whilst the focus of "Road Trip" is on the comedy it does a surprisingly good job of building up the various characters. Along the hazard littered road trip we learn about Josh, E.L., Kyle and Rubin and to be honest we enjoy the close friendship which forms especially between oddball Kyle as he comes of age whilst with them. All of this does make "Road Trip" a movie which feels like some thought has gone into it, that set piece gags have been worked to build up the characters and their relationships rather than just being a movie of loosely related jokes.
But whilst "Road Trip" does feel more than just a series of gags it is very much a movie all about the jokes and as you would expect for a teen comedy post "American Pie" it focuses on crude and nude jokes. From discussing when cheating is not wrong through to donating sperm, taking drugs, one night stands and pretty much anything else you can imagine "Road Trip" makes a joke out of it. Some of the humour is good, some is just weird and some borders on the disgusting but for those who enjoy juvenile comedy will have a good time with the cavalcade of laughs which flows throughout "Road Trip".
As for the acting well for the most it works although none of it is that brilliant. Breckin Meyer, Amy Smart, Paulo Costanzo and DJ Qualls all deliver fun characters and although as E.L. Seann William Scott is basically recreating Stifler he does it so well. And then of course there is Tom Green as Barry Manilow who basically tells a crowd he is showing around Ithaca about this legendary road trip. What can you say about Green other than it is another very wacky performance which includes getting rather personal with a mouse.
What this all boils down to is that "Road Trip" isn't a bad movie and if you enjoy teenage comedies which revel in rude and crude humour it will easily please. What makes it better than so many teen comedies is that the comedy works with the slim storyline to give it all a purpose rather than just being one set piece gag after another.