- The Washington Times - Friday, December 14, 2001

Step aside, Tom Green. Make way, Farrelly brothers. "Not Another Teen Movie," a supposed swipe at teen-age comedies, steals the gross-out crown for 2001 and perhaps beyond. It is the film's audience, though, who walks away with the booby prize.
"Not Another Teen Movie" is a bouquet of fecal humor and undulating flesh that mistakes unprocessed obscenity for humor.
The film is a parade of indignities masquerading as satire. "Teen" takes aim at any movie with teen-age stars, from ripe targets such as "Cruel Intentions" and "Varsity Blues" to less obvious fare such as "American Beauty."
Viewers won't have a second to breathe, given the onslaught of rarely funny sight gags delivered throughout its too-long 82-minute run.
What hath 1980's "Airplane" wrought?
That now-classic parody zeroed in on disaster films, producing one cheeky homage after another with knee-slapping gags, all played straight by Leslie Nielsen and crew.
Modern-day satires such as "Scary Movie" and "Wet Hot American Summer," in turn, sound less coherent than an IMF protester's rant.
These films would have audiences laugh just by referencing earlier, funnier movie moments.
It is a postmodern laziness perfected by the Wayans brothers, the creative team responsible for "Scary Movie" and "Scary Movie 2." Apparently, such movies still get green-lighted, if "Teen" is any measuring shtick.
The anorexic plot takes its cues from "She's All That" a tale of a wallflower turned high school sensation. "Teen" keeps stopping, though, to evoke numerous other films, including "The Breakfast Club" and "Never Been Kissed."
In "Teen," would-be gridiron hero Jake Wyler (Chris Evans) makes a bet with Nordic narcissist Austin (Eric Christian Olsen) that he can transform plain Janey (Chyler Leigh) into the hottest hottie at John Hughes High simply by courting her.
Of course, that enrages Janey's best friend and eternal crush, Ricky (Eric Jungmann), a spin on Jon Cryer's lovestruck Duckie from "Pretty in Pink."
Naturally, Janey is a knockout, a truth obscured solely by a pair of mundane frames and a ponytail. It's a comic refrain that is only mildly funny the first go-round.
Other teen-film archetypes thrown into the bawdy blend include cranky cheerleader Priscilla (Jaime Pressly), token black guy Malik (Deon Richmond) and Amanda (Lacey Chabert, the "Party of Five" graduate blandly spoofing former co-star Jennifer Love Hewitt's busty perfection in "Can't Hardly Wait").
A trio of exaggeratedly coiffed teens give lip service to losing their innocence, a nod to the far superior "American Pie," which comes off like a Merchant-Ivory epic by comparison.
Few of the actors leave an impression, though escaping this travesty unscathed may be a coup unto itself. Mr. Evans' rumbling growl reminds one of an ersatz Baldwin brother faint praise indeed.
Pity Randy Quaid. The once respectable actor drifts along in a sea of dubious talents as Janey's besotted dad. At least the actor is smart enough to underplay his scenes, a tip he should have shared with his cast mates.
Miss Pressly's husky timbre and feline grace make her a slight exception. Her cheerleading scenes bring on a few welcome laughs, as do her snotty cheerleaderisms.
A buckshot comedy like "Teen," however, can't help but score a few chuckles.
Director Joel Gallen, who supervised MTV's witty Movie Awards vignettes, telegraphs his jokes like an aging fighter tipping off his left jab.
A quintet of writers provide flatulence humor, incest jokes and a cheerleader stricken with Tourette's syndrome, a cruel gag that was employed with slightly more dignity in "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo."
The script shoehorns vulgar dialogue into every other character's potty mouth, instantly reducing its collective shock appeal.
As if the verbal puns weren't enough, the film proffers an exploding-toilet scene with the subsequent sewage splash.
Even Howard Stern might find that sequence over the top.
One recurring bit, the aged undercover reporter slipping back to high school a la "Never Been Kissed," culminates in a cringe-inducing make-out bit that shouldn't be seen to be believed.
Worst of all, the film doesn't even know what to spoof. A John Hughes film from the '80s differs in tone from the average Freddie Prinze Jr., late-90s yarn, but "Teen" tackles both with the same slipshod attention.
By the time a Brat Pack graduate makes an ill-advised cameo, it is clear "Not Another Teen Movie" has run out of movies from which to pilfer, having long since run out of clever gags.

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