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Starring: Seann William Scott, Paul Rudd, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Elizabeth Banks

Director: David Wain

Screenplay:  Paul Rudd, David Wain

Cinematography: Russ T. Alsobrook

Original Score: Craig Wedren

Running Time: 99 Mins.

A good comedy has two chances at hitting the spot, one, it needs to be funny, (thats a given) and two, to make it a real comedy great it must compel in its plot whilst avoiding cliche, breathing new life in to the genre. Hell thats some feat you may think, not even an Oscar hopeful has that many boxes to tick, and by all accounts you would be right, for truly great comedies rarely, if ever, get the recognition they deserve.  But lets not get carried away, Role Models is NOT a comedy great but it is one thing, it’s down right hilarious from start to finish with 90% of the jokes hitting the spot, a very high hit rate I might add!

At the top of their game are Seann WIlliam Scott and Paul Rudd (whom shares a co-writer credit with director Wain) playing to type, but when you play to type this well why change! Following the typical buddy formula of chalk and cheese friends getting on, over-coming obstacles, falling out and making up just in time for a happy finale. The obstacle here is that after an unfortunate incident involving a lot of energy drinks, Wheeler (Scott) and Danny (Rudd) are given the option of a prison sentence or community service. Naturally they choose the latter option resulting in them becoming the titular ‘Role Models’.

As you would expect Wheeler is a ladies man, womaniser and all round joker (so Steve Stifler all grown up then!)  and Danny is the insecure loser who reels off film quotes to try and win back his girlfriend (Elizabeth Banks in a largely thankles role). Put them together and you have the potential for an avalanche of funny jokes. Thats before you add the kids these guys are acting role models too, and the joke quota just gets upped another notch.

Teamed with a foul mouthed 10 year old Wheeler gets the perfect foil to his woman loving ways, teaching Ronnie how to look at womens boobs discreetly, among other such delights. Danny on the other hand gets the third wheel of the films comedy trio in Superbad’s Mclovin himself, Christopher Mintz Plasse. His Augie is a geek (i use that term fondly!) of the highest order and seeing Danny’s attempts to bond with him are the high points of the film, with only the finale of a role playing battle over-stretching the joke a touch. Seeing the four leads dressed as Kiss is only funny for so long!

As expected all the cliches end up succumbed too, but thankfully it doesnt get too saccharine, with Wheeler and Danny’s sardonic barbs ensuring we never get too bogged down in mushy life lessons, but it doesnt hide the fect that there is very little plot here upon which the jokes are hung.  

VERDICT

Role Models is consistantly hilarious with some emminantly quotable lines and excellent performances all round, but the plot is just too loose and ever so slightly cliched to put it up there with the likes of Knocked Up and Zack and Miri Make a Porno’s’ comedic gold.

 grade-c

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