Saturday, March 22, 2008

Drillbit Taylor

Drillbit Taylor is better than the previews made it out to be. I wasn't expecting very much, which may have been the reason for my enjoyment. If you go in for a good time, you won't be dissappointed. Think of it as a more family friendly Superbad- with actors that really could be in high-school (nothing against Jonah Hill, but c'mon, he's older than I am).

Owen Wilson really is a fabulous actor. He plays the movie's namesake- a sleazy yet undeniably charming homeless man. Meanwhile Nate Hartley, Troy Gentile, and David Dorfman play Wade, Ryan, and Emmit- three high-school freshman misfits with a severe bully (Alex Frost) problem. They decide to hire a bodyguard, and Drillbit sees this as a perfect opportunity to make a quick buck. Nothing that happens in this movie is realistic. The unabashed, and completely unapologetic look into the profane and perverted mind of the high-schooler in Superbad is thrown out the window here, but it doesn't lose any of the comedy.

The triumverate of losers were actually pretty good. You really feel for their position, but the star was obviously Drillbit. He goes through the greatest transition, including some rather uncomfortable confrontations, that were more awkward than funny. The only one I didn't like was Frost. His bully character was more annoying than intimidating. I wanted to kick his ass, and it didn't seem like it would be all that hard to do.

No movie about a lovable loser would be complete without a romantic interest. To protect his protégés, Drillbit assumes the persona of a substitute teacher, and develops a relationship with another teacher (Leslie Mann). This was the weakest part of the movie. They're relationship was a bit forced, and I don't care what world this is, I don't think any serious teacher would have sixth period sex every day in an empty classroom. Maybe, though, I was pretty oblivious in high-school.

This is yet another Judd Apatow film (though I don't think he had much of anything to do with this). It was directed by the absolutely mediocre Steven Brill, who's behind some of Adam Sandler's worst movies (Little Nicky, Mr. Deeds). The strength comes from the scripting collaboration of Seth Rogan (yeah, he's pumping them out, and they're all good), and John Hughes (the John Hughes). Then of course, Wilson just brings it all together.

Like a certain other movie I recently reviewed, this isn't great, but it's fun, and damn funny. I'll probably forget about it in a few weeks, but for the hour-and-a-half sitting in the darkened theater, surrounded by laughter, it was worth it.


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