Van Wilder: Party Liaison (2002) starring Ryan Reynolds, Tara Reid, Tim Matheson, Kal Penn, Paul Gleason, Teck Holmes, Daniel Cosgrove, Erik Estrada, Curtis Armstrong directed by Walt Becker Movie Review

Van Wilder: Party Liaison (2002)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Ryan Reynolds in Van Wilder: Party Liaison

Party Planner with Van for Hire

For Van Wilder (Ryan Reynolds - The Proposal), college is not about getting an education, it's a way of life, a life of partying and having fun. After 7 years of 'failing' to get an education, his dad decides to get tough and stop paying for his fees. Is the party over? Not for Van, who, with the help of his friends sets about earning money to continue his fun loving existence. Through a series of ingenious schemes and fund raising parties, Van's way of life becomes of huge interest to a college reporter, Gwen (Tara Reid - American Pie 2). Through a series of unfortunate events, Van realises that he may have to do something he never imagined possible, he may have to GRADUATE.

"Van Wilder: Party Liaison" starring Ryan Reynolds and Tara Reid is firmly made in the same style as the "American Pie" and "Road Trip" movies, with a mixture of gross out and sexual comedy, romance as well as coming of age combined to make a movie which targets young people. The storyline is very predictable to say the least, but the main purpose of "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" is not to entertain you with a well thought out storyline but with the visual comedy which dominates 99% of the screen time. You get the usual romance story, boy meets girl, girl is with someone else, but realises that he is not the one for her, schedule happy ending. You also get the storyline of a man who realises that he can no longer live the teenage life and it is about time he does something with it. Other than that there is not much else to the storyline, but don't let that detract from what "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" is all about, and that is the humour.

Tara Reid as Gwen Pearson in Van Wilder: Party Liaison

Where "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" will split people is in the comedy and as already mentioned it is typical of modern college comedies which focus on boundary pushing gross out humour. I have to say there are a couple of scenes, in particular the one featuring a dog and some cream cakes which made me want to hurl, but then the rest of the comedy was quite entertaining.

The main star of "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" is Ryan Reynolds who plays the part of fun loving Van very well, then again there is not that much depth to the character so in my eyes was not that difficult. You then have Tara Reid, I apologise to any fans of Tara Reid, but I believe she is only in this movie for her looks and not her acting ability, for me she spends most of the time looking like a rabbit stuck in the headlights of a car.

An interesting piece of casting is Tim Matheson as Van's father; firstly the resemblance between the two of them is uncanny, but also he starred in the original college party movie "National Lampoon's Animal House". Also, there is a Cameo by Chris Owen (American Pie) early on in the movie as well as a familiar role for Paul Gleason as a college teacher. The rest of the cast are adequate in assisting in this continual gag fest.

"Van Wilder: Party Liaison" is Walt Becker's first move as a director, and he does a satisfactory job of keeping it moving along and should be satisfied that it is nearly as good as the "American Pie" movies. The cinematography and soundtrack are again satisfactory but in the same breath, unmemorable. I cannot put my finger on any scene where I though wow that was well filmed, or that piece of music really works well, but then again I cannot put my finger on any scene where I though that camera angle didn't work.

What this all boils down to is that "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" is an enjoyable movie, and is very easy to watch, although at times I feel that some of the jokes may be pushing on the realms of plain right disgusting (cake scene). The movie runs surprisingly very smoothly and you find yourself routing for Van to achieve his goals. I don't believe that it is as good as the American Pie series but does an admirable effort in trying to match it. I would recommend "Van Wilder: Party Liaison" to anyone who wants a fun packed unchallenging film and would guarantee that they will watch it more than once.