Surf School (2006)
Dir: Joel Silverman
Stars: Corey Sevier, Laura Bundy Bell, Sisqo
Surf School, unlike our previous entry Battlefield Earth, is a bad movie (like a very bad movie), but it was bad enough that it was funny. We’ll get to that a little later though.
Firstly, all you need to know about this movie is summed up within the first minute and twenty-five seconds. So let’s run through it shall we?
Surf School begins with a song you better get used to, most likely called ‘Surf School’ but I’m not going to look that up, because it will be played a minimum of five more times throughout the duration of the movie. But then the title cards start, and it begins with “Righteous Dudes Productions presents,” followed by “In association with ‘Thongs R Us Entertainment.’” Although it is quickly noted that – and I’m not making this up – ‘Thongs R Us Entertainment’ is “formerly known as ‘Pipeline In Your Pants Productions.’” So that had me laughing right away.
Next comes a nice little screw up that played especially well for me, because of the proximity to where I go to school. During the opening line of dialogue, which is “Lacrosse season is already over, and you have a scholarship to Maryland…” (That’s the school I’m doing this blog for!), we are informed that the main character is from “Silver Springs, Maryland,” which is, simply put, not a real place, while Silver Spring, Maryland is. Just nice to know the producers were paying attention.
All this is fine, and pretty funny, but then at 1:25, the real bomb drops.
SISQO?!? SISQO IS IN THIS MOVIE??? LIKE ‘THONG SONG’ SISQO??? OMIGOD YES!
And he is. Playing a high-schooler at the ripe young age of 28. Oh yeah, this is going to be good. (As my friend Matt noted, “That’s his agent working really hard to find him work”)
So the general plot, as if that mattered, is that Jordan (Corey Sevier) moves from Silver Spring to Laguna Beach, where he is now an outcast and hangs out with the “loser” group, which is rounded out by a nerd, an overly-horny punky kid, a goth-ish girl and Sisqo. Oh and he’s ridiculed by being taunted as ‘Mary.’ Like the state he’s from. How clever.
To prove they are just as cool as the popular kids, the “losers” jet down to Costa Rica for a surfing competition but guess what? None of them can surf! So they recieve the help of a burn-out surfer (Harland Williams) and hilarity ensues.
But not the way the director wanted, I’m sure. The movie is plenty funny, but only because of how bad the dialogue is. And it’s dumb, really dumb. Like sometimes to the point where it’s borderline insulting.
Besides being completely riddled with the classic high school clichés of jocks vs. nerds, there’s also the overly-sexual hippies, over-sexual foreign girls, an extremely flamboyant homosexual character as well as a whole bunch of poorly constructed Latin American stereotypes. Also, the Swedish girls speak with what seems to be a German accent. This bothered me.
And speaking of the Swedish girls – and girls in general in the movie – I’m not complaining, but this is not one for the feminists. The majority of written jokes derive from some sort of sexual innuendo and as the movie is set on a beach, well, it looks like a sex comedy set on a beach.
Also, Harland Williams is a pretty funny dude, but he’s rubbish here, almost never being funny – intentionally or not. This is a notice to future filmmakers: mahi mahi is not a funny word, it is not a funny concept, it’s not funny. At all.
Ah and Sisqo. Good old, Sisqo. While they totally used him for a laugh once (I believe the quote was “I could totally write a song about that thong.”), the people running the show really missed the boat when they literally have him on a stage, in a bar, with a microphone and he doesn’t sing “The Thong Song.” They teed it up and just missed by a mile on that one.
All in all, it wasn’t an awful experience. Am I going to watch it again? No. But should you watch it? Meh. It’s on Netflix Streaming and, honestly, you’re going to laugh, so why not? Again, it’s funny, just not in the ways it was supposed to be.
Critique: 1 star out of 5
Bad Movie Rating: 2 stars out of 5
- According to IMDb: “Harland Williams was asked why he didn’t list it in his film credits. His response, “You actually saw that piece of shit?”
- The movie doesn’t have a Wikipedia page. I think I’ll be changing that soon.
- Laura Bell Bundy, who plays Doris in the movie, is now a country singer. Her 2010 album Achin’ and Shakin’ hit number 5 on the US Country charts, and the single “Giddy On Up” from that album reached number 31 on the US Country Singles charts.