Home > Movies, My Movie Reviews > Paul Rudd & Seann William Scott Strike It Rich In “Role Models”

Paul Rudd & Seann William Scott Strike It Rich In “Role Models”


Stifler. That guy in all those funny movies starring other people. Up until now, those are the two things that Seann William Scott and Paul Rudd have been to the mass movie going public. Sure, Scott made you giggle in “Old School” and Rudd stole the show in “Fill In The Blank Apatow Movie” but they haven’t had much luck in their starring vehicles. The movies have either been terrible (“Mr. Woodcock”? “Over Her Dead Body”?) or complete box office failures (“Red Hot American Summer”, “The Rundown”). “Role Models” is not only one of the funniest movies of 2008, it fulfills the potential in both of these very funny and underrated actors.

While this movie succeeds in being hysterically charming and vulgar, it isn’t breaking new ground. The story revolves around over-sexed Wheeler (Scott) and bitter, depressed Danny (Rudd). The two of them work for energy drink giant Minotaur, which is a creature of myth. Their main purpose? Travel to high schools and convince kids to stop doing drugs and turn up a Minotaur instead. Very, very noble.

After Danny’s girlfriend (Elizabeth Banks simply being cute) dumps him, Danny drives the Minotaur truck into a high school monument. Danny and Wheeler are both arrested and their punishment is 150 hours of community service in one month. If they don’t fulfill the community service, they go to jail for 30 days. Sounds pretty lame right? It’s straight out of a Adam Sandler movie. Thankfully, the cast and the…well…the vulgarity completely takes an overdone concept and makes it a winner.

Danny and Wheeler are sent to a kid’s Big Brothers/Big Sisters-type program called Sturdy Wings. The program is run by Gayle Sweeney, a recovering alcoholic/cocaine addict. Gayle is played by Jane Lynch and she is in rare form here. Lynch rarely appears in a film these days in which she doesn’t steal her scenes from the main characters.

Danny is paired up with uber-geek Augie (Christopher Mintz-Plasse/McLovin’). Augie is a hopeless geek and he is completely obsessed with a game played by adults in which they act and fight as if they live in medieval times. Wheeler is set up with Ronnie (Bobb’e J. Thompson), a 10-year old black kid that is completely obsessed with cursing, breasts, and mocking the very white Danny.

We all know where the movie is going by the thirty minute mark. The adults are going to learn how to grow up from the kids and then, the adults will help the kids gain acceptance. Well, if you guessed that…you’re dead on right. While watching a movie like this, you simply have to not care about why the characters are doing what they are doing. All that matters is what they are saying and how they are saying it. Every single actor has pitch-perfect chemistry and comedic timing that, no matter what, the humor works.

Scott’s Wheeler is the type of character that may get people to stop calling him Stifler. Sure, he is rude, brash, and abrasive but he isn’t idiotic or annoying. He and Tompson have instant chemistry and their dual childishness is completely believable. Mintz-Plasse takes another geeky role and really pulls it off in an Anthony Michael Hall-type fashion.

The real winner here is Paul Rudd. His deadpan delivery of insults, biting remarks, and self-loathing completely steals the show. There are few actors that can say and do such prick-ish things in a movie and still be likable. Rudd walks that fine line here and never comes off too mean spirited.

“Role Models” is a sweet and fun adult comedy. After seeing that it pulled in a bit over nineteen million bucks over the weekend, I am assuming I am not the only one that really enjoyed it. While this movie isn’t going to break records, it is the type that could see some steady business from potential great word of mouth. If anything, it will hopefully open more doors for Rudd and Scott, two seriously gifted comedic actors. This could be their “Wedding Crashers”.

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  1. November 11, 2008 at 9:18 AM

    I like Rudd, like a lot, can’t wait to see him in this.

  2. June 24, 2009 at 1:58 AM

    This was a funny fick, great actors, great idea.

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