Producer Judd Apatow's characters keep getting younger yet surprisingly less funny. It was a mediocre 40-year-old virgin then hilarious 20-somethings and moderately funny high school seniors; now it's ho-hum high school freshman. If the trend continues, soon we'll see an Apatow comedy about foul-mouthed toddlers and it won't be funny at all.
Inbound freshman Wade (Nate Hartley, Unlicensed), Ryan (Troy Gentile, Bad News Bears) and Emmit (David Dorfman, The Ring) are immediately the target of school bullies. Desperate for reprieve, the boys post an online ad for a bodyguard—and it's answered by a homeless con man (Owen Wilson, Wedding Crashers) bent on getting their money and robbing their homes.
Kids standing up to bullies isn't anything new hence the film doesn't feel very original, but the three lead boys are pretty iconic little dorks. However, the script, co-written by Apatow regular Seth Rogen, doesn't really take the classic premise anywhere new.
A friend crassly joked that this film and not his breakup from Kate Hudson is what drove Owen Wilson to attempt suicide last year, which is a ridiculous claim. But yet again playing an overgrown charismatic kid with zero ambition is certainly not going to breathe new life into his career.
This title isn't going to induce hysterical fits of laughter like its predecessors Knocked Up and Superbad, and it gets no points for originality but if you're in the mood for watching kids behaving badly, this one might get you through until the Lohan family reality show next airs.
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