DARKMATTERS - The Mind of Matt

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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Drillbit Taylor - the 'watching bullies getting beaten is fun' review

Drillbit Taylor (12a)

Dir. Steven Brill

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

“See that homeless dude showering naked on the beach? That’s you that is, that’s your mum… Now shut up and take your beating, oh and give me your lunch money and mobile phone while you’re at it!?”
Ah school bullies eh? Bane of many a child’s life and a perpetual problem for High School students – especially in this case two pals like Wade (Nate Hartley) who is freakishly skinny and Ryan / T-Dog (Troy Gentile) who is overweight. The two find to their horror on their first day at their new school that it is ruled by psychotic bully Filkins (Alex Frost) – and they soon become his targets after Wade tries to stop him hurting the class wimp Emmit (David Dorfman), known as ‘hobbit’ for his pint size physique. So far, so much like many teen coming of age flicks but Drillbit Taylor is from the stable of comic overlords Judd Apatow / Seth Rogen – those of Superbad and Knocked Up fame. What are they to do except hire a badass bodyguard to protect them?
If the plot seems familiar, that’s because it’s ripped right off from '80s movie My Bodyguard (and in a nice touch there’s even a cameo by Adam Baldwin who was the bodyguard in that flick). But the new Bodyguard on the block is Drillbit (Owen Wilson) and his winning smile manages to convince the boys that he can help them with their bully problem…
The only small problem is that Drillbit is actually a homeless scoundrel looking to rip the innocent young chaps off. Yes he might have military experience but rather than having been dismissed from the Army for ‘acts of unauthorised heroism’, as he claims, he’s really AWOL and broke.
Will he make good on his promise to sort out the evil but slick Filkins or will he do a bunk and leave them in the lurch?
There's lots of fun to be had along the way and my son Luke and his mate (who both start High School in September) thought it was great.
Director 'Without A Paddle' Brill almost redeems himself for his previous crimes against the viewing public with this good natured and genuinely funny romp. There are even some wicked nods to classic films to please devotees such as when Drillbit quotes the immortal lines from Blade Runner: “I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion.” trying to pass it off as his real life experience.

DARKMATTERS RATING SYSTEM (all ratings out of maximum 10):

Endorphin Stimulation: ööööööö (7)
- Wilson is cool, the kids are great!

Tasty Action: ööööööö (7)
- Some crunching fights and lots of mischief

Gratuitous Babeness: ööööö (5)
- Average females

Mind Blight / Boredom: ööööö (5)
- Some slow scenes

Comedic Value: öööööööö (8)
- Lots of funny stuff and refreshingly not too vulgar

Arbitrary final rating: öööööö (6)
- Enjoyable fun all round

Liable to make you:
"want your own personal bodyguard!"

DM Poster Quote:
“violence isn't normally the answer, but sometimes..."

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