Click here to buy it now: Old School (Widescreen Unrated Edition)
Distributed by: Dreamworks Video
Reviewed by Ismael Manzano
I was quite literally forced into watching the movie Old School by a coworker of my wife who was hell bent on ridding her of her prejudice toward Will Ferrell movies—Elf being the only exception. I’d heard plenty of people tell me that I had to watch this movie, heard them go halfway into a joke, only to stop and tell me I had to watch it for myself. Well, I wrestled with the idea of not watching it at all and giving it back to my wife’s coworker the next day, but there are only so many times you can take people shouting, “You’re my boy, Blue!” before you start to get curious why everyone else is laughing. So I saw the movie; I’m still wondering why everyone else is laughing.
The first misconception I’d like to address, is the one that Old School is Will Ferrell’s movie. It’s not. The story centers around Mitch Martin (Luke Wilson of…the same genetic material that made Owen Wilson), a corporate suit with a well paying job, a steady girlfriend, a house, and the future laid out in front of him. That is until he comes home to find his girlfriend Heidi (Juliette Lewis, Natural Born Killers) engaged in some, questionable behavior with two blindfolded naked people and a porn movie. He of course moves out and finds a place of his own, a house located near the local college. Mitch’s buddies, Beanie Campbell (Vince Vaughn, from those tabloid pictures with Jennifer Aniston) and the newly married Frank Ricard (Will Ferrell, SNL and Elf), come to his rescue and try to cheer up their downtrodden friend. Being played by Vince Vaughn, Beanie was, of course, the same character as all the other Vince Vaughn characters, and immediately hatched a plan to make Mitch forget all about his troubles—throwing as many wild parties in Mitch’s new house as it takes for him to forget about his cheating ex-girlfriend.
This plan backfires when their partying attracts the attention of a former acquaintance whom the three used to pick on as children, Gordon Pritchard (Jeremy Piven, Entourage)—also known as Dean Pritchard. Falling into the bad guy role, Dean Pritchard seeks his revenge for a traumatic childhood by attempting to kick Mitch out of the house, citing a school’s charter law that the house must be used as a fraternity. Rather than lose the house, Beanie convinces Mitch to turn it into a fraternity, and wackiness ensues. Only the good old Dean doesn’t stop there, and uses every trick in the book to close them down and get his revenge once and for all. But can the group of goofy gallivanters, foil the dastardly devices of the devilish Dean?
As a whole, the movie was crude, loosely constructed, and had some—but not a lot—of pointless sexual content scenes—the one with Andy Dick was hysterical, however. It’s not the must-see that I’ve heard people make it out to be, but it was worth the rental, and worth a load of laughs. As for downsides, I have just one to point out: The relationship between Frank and his wife seemed to have been leading in one direction, but the movie ended with it going in the opposite direction, leaving me to wonder whether a last minute change had occurred in the editing process.
So what’s my final verdict on Old School. It’s not the breakaway comical hit that people seem to think it was, but it was entertaining and that, in itself is worth one go around.
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