Senior Skip Day (2008)
Senior Skip Day (2008)

Genre: Comedy Running Time: 1 hr. 32 min.

Release Date: May 6th, 2008 MPAA Rating: R

Director: Nick Weiss Actors: Gary Lundy, Larry Miller, Lea Thompson, Tara Reid, Kayla Ewell, Taryn Southern, Lindsey Axelsson, Jessica Morris, Jackson Rathbone, Clint Howard, Norm MacDonald

 


 

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othing really works for the thrown-together, straight-to-DVD film “Senior Skip Day.” Attempting to exploit the same themes as “American Pie,” trying to utilize raunchy humor, and struggling to introduce eccentric high school players, this sad little project fails at all of it. Predictably atrocious, the laughs are incredibly sparse and the characters are recycled versions of the most forgettable bit parts from other popular teen movies.

Adam Harris (Gary Lundy) is a typical high school senior; he regularly daydreams about being with the girl he can’t have, he wishes to hang with the cool crowd, and he realizes that even his mom is better at youthful partying. Goaded by his sister Ellen (Tara Reid), Adam decides to host the “Senior Skip Day” gathering at his house, after the original plans are shattered. And the previous plan was to throw an enormous party at the home of no-nonsense principal Frankfurt Dickwalder (Larry Miller) – until Adam is coerced into spilling the beans, coupled with the vindictive principal’s torture skills inflicted upon another student.

Adam maneuvers his way through the day, carefully trying to make amends for his betrayal to the other senior students. He also attempts to woo longtime fancy Cara (Kayla Ewell), who is preoccupied with a cheating boyfriend hellbent on getting her in the sack. Building a record-breaking bong, loading up on alcohol, and convincing his classmates to join the festivities, Adam bustles about to set up the perfect soiree, as Dickwalder mercilessly seeks out the new location for the frowned-upon tradition.

Adam narrates the film by speaking directly to the camera – and he is often joined by other supporting characters who add in their own thoughts for the audience (clearly borrowing from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”). Unusual for a 2008 production, but bothersome nonetheless, this one device is the only idea in the film that isn’t completely generic. Everything else appears to be reused moments from the very worst the “American Pie” series had to offer. The pet dog has his uninspired words translated onscreen; Adam has a scrawny sidekick character who engages in the most obnoxious activities (such as donning a fake mustache to portray a French photographer to convince female models to come to Adam’s party); and an elderly lady makes an appearance to create some generically awkward jokes.

All the stereotypes are present, from the nonsensical stoner to the environmentalist psycho to the meathead jocks to the dumb blondes – which, of course, have flooded every teen comedy since the invention of the teen comedy. The notions of preaching about true love and shedding fears about making a move on a dream date take precedence near the end, but the film is so inconceivably boilerplate and mediocre that it’s difficult to take anything it presents with sincerity. Even with the cameos, there’s something highly pitiable at work. Clint Howard plays the go-to guy for alcohol, a role that seems like rock bottom (even for a character actor who never reached the top); Norm MacDonald, who appears as a teacher, once again shows his limited range by playing himself; and Tara Reid looks set for negative attention when audiences see how she’s let herself go (physically). But considering how small and uninteresting this film is, perhaps no one will watch all these has-been celebrities make greater fools of themselves after all.

– Mike Massie

  • 2/10