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Slackers

DVD

Price: 1.73
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Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
12 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Slackers Review 1 Feb 2002
By SINic - Published on Amazon.com
If you are an aspiring filmmaker/media producer, you know that seeing really good movies can provide much aspiration to create them someday. To marvel at classics such as Scorcese's Raging Bull, or bizarre works of art like Kubrik's Full Metal Jacket, it would seem to any young college visionary that their own cinematic masterpiece was just a dream away...
Then there's steaming piles of horse sh*t like Dewey Nick's Slackers that literally leave you embarrassed and spellbound at how such pathetic piles of waste could have possibly been green-lighted in Hollywood.
For those of you that don't know, a green light in the filmmakin' biz is when a movie gets the go ahead to be made. How Slackers avoided seeing more red lights than an underage hooker in Saigon is a complete mystery to me.
However, movies as awful as this one are still beneficial. How you ask? Well, if schlock like this can pass as viewable cinema, that gives a lot of hope to us aspiring filmmaker's out here who also have written horrible scripts that we had originally thought disposing of was the best plan. Well future Spielbergs and Scorceses, we were wrong! Dust off those Chupacabra screenplays and ideas for the 235th Batman and/or Rocky movie! Apparently in modern day Hollywood, anything goes!
"Anything goes" should have been the slogan for Slackers. The movie fights powerfully through an excruciatingly painful and embarrassing 90 minutes to be the biggest gross out comedy of recent years. In some ways, it succeeds. There's oral sex, masturbation, urinating, and elderly whore sponge-bathing, all so un-tastefully done that the makers of the film would have been better off leaving out all of the other scenes and just making it one big ball of shock value.
Don't mistake me though. When I say "shock value," in this case it means something more along the lines of "Wow, I'm shocked that someone actually made a movie that was this incredibly despicable. What I wouldn't give to meet the people responsible for this `film' so I could castrate them as an appetizer to a main course of offing them execution style in the street on national television." You know, that kind of shock value.
Attention: There are plot/surprise spoilers ahead. But you really should read on, because if you go into this movie expecting all the stupidity that you will be in store for, you may be more prepared and not kill yourself after witnessing this awful creation.

The movie opens on a college campus (note: forgive me for leaving out details sometimes in the rest of this review. I didn't know I was going to review it until I saw how bad it was) where three lazy guys rule with a tired fist. Hahaha! Get it! Cause they're slackers!
Anyhoo, while cheating on a test for his friends, the ring leader of the slackers (Devon Sawa, don't remember his name in the movie) is unknowingly being observed by the biggest dork on campus, Cool Ethan, who is obsessed with a girl that Sawa is sitting next to and hitting on during the test.
Like, the name "Cool" Ethan the plot of this movie sucks. Ready for this? Okay! Since Ethan saw Sawa cheating on the test and hitting on his crush, he's going to turn in Sawa and his two slacker buddies for cheating if they don't get him hooked up with his dream girl. That's right, it's the same recycled crap-cake if you don't do this than I'll do that formula you've seen over, and over and over again in teen movies. It's at its worst here, trusting me.
Predictably, "Cool" Ethan is anything but. In fact, he's pretty much a freakin' psychopath. No kidding, this guy's mental illness really takes away from any humor that was supposed to come from this role. He shaves his chest hair in the shape of the first letter of the dream girl's name, he makes a doll of her out of strands of her hair that he seeks out all cross campus, and he has an extensive collection of videos and photographs of her.
Ethan has a shower scene in the movie, which he sings and pees on himself. It has absolutely no purpose in the plot or any relevance the film might have. This scene pretty much sums up the entire film: it exists only as a vehicle for pure ridiculousness.
Another pointless scene involves one of Sawa's buddies singing accompanied by none other than his penis with some sort of a puppet on it. If anyone sees it you can correct me if I'm wrong (klarkbar@hotmail.com), but I'm pretty sure his penis is actually alive. Yes, as I recall he is not doing a ventriloquist act, his penis is literally an organism that moves rhythmically and sings.
Now I know what you're thinking, some of this actually sounds funny, right? Well, I might have said the same thing had I just heard about this, or, I dare say, viewed these scenes independent of the rest of the movie. But I really don't think they'd be the slightest bit funny even then, and with the rest of the movie, they just work to make it ten times worse than it already is minus the gross out scenes. I'd like to note that I've only mentioned a couple out of many, but not a one of them makes a bit of sense or is the slightest bit funny.
I saw people walk out of this movie. They walked out of a free preview of an unreleased movie early in the film. Keep in mind a lot of these kids were likely freshman in the dorms that more or less had nothing else to do, and they walked out. When only a quarter of the pointless gross outs had happened. I've never walked out of a movie and I vow to never do so. I've slept through them, eaten through them, necked through them and made fun of them, but I've always been against the walking out thing because I thought it was silly to walk out of something you had played for, or in this case pass up a cool opportunity in seeing a movie that wasn't going to be released nationally for another week. I now have sympathy for the walkers. I still will never walk from a movie, but I understand now.
This movie is terrible. The acting is horrible. Sawa seems to have the repeated misfortune of being cast in tasteless gross-out teen movies (Idle Hands). Hey Devon, I have an idea for your next movie. Kill your agent, poop on him, and then base the movie on the true story of of your grisly fecal murder. Make sure you get an incredibly horrible screenwriter, and also make sure to be a stoner in the movie, which for some reason on screen you are predisposed to doing on screen in every stupid movie you do. At least Idle Hands was kind of funny sometimes even if it was a stupid kind of funny. This movie made me laugh once, and I'm pretty sure it was out of pity.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Alas! Talent Wasted! 11 Feb 2002
By Michael James Allen - Published on Amazon.com
I had vowed to go watch the movie "Slackers," no matter what anyone had told me about it, because I was naively trying to convince myself, "Well, it has Jason Schwartzman... It must be good, right?" Well, I went and saw "Slackers" and was, much like many had told me I would be, disappointed. "Slackers" is unoriginal, uneven, and commits the cardinal sin of filmmaking: It wastes talent. There is, indeed, a lot of talented people involved with this film. The director, Dewey Nicks, displays a unique style that is modern and fun throughout this film. Jason Schwartzman, playing a stalker-in-training named Cool Ethan, is very funny playing a sort-of-riff on the character of Max Fischer from "Rushmore." And Devon Sawa showed a lot of acting promise in the film "SLC Punk!" so you'd expect him to deliver a funny/charming characterization.
Yet all this talent cannot save "Slackers" and, in fact, adds salt to the wound becuase "Slackers" could've been a very funny college campus black comedy in the veign of "Animal House." But it's not. Its story is so unoriginal and lame and its gross-out gags so dirty and unfunny that the story is a disgrace (on the subject of the gross-out comedy: When is Hollywood going to learn that gross-out gags aren't funny if the characters that they happen to are PROUD of them and don't care if they happen). Not only this, but the movie is also confusing and very scattered.
All in all, "Slackers" is an example of talent gone haywire. A film by only the strictest definition of the word. My advice is to just forget this movie was ever made and go rent "Rushmore" instead, to quench your thirst for a quality film.
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars One star is too generous 8 Feb 2002
By Reader - Published on Amazon.com
Kudos to SINic for an excellent review. This movie is an incredible waste of time.
6 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars "Slackers" fails to make the grade. 12 Feb 2002
By D. Litton - Published on Amazon.com
The teen comedy hits an all-time low in Dewey Nicks's film "Slackers" a film that tries ever-so-hard to milk the gross-out cow for everything it's worth, and fails miserably. What the audience is subjected two is a vomitorium of disgusting images and sickening bodily humor, all of which are aimed right at our gag reflexes rather than our funny bone.
It's the latest in a long and longer line of teen comedies that rely on such material for humor, most notably the successful "American Pie" franchise, and the rancid films "Say it Isn't So" and "Tomcats." I must say, though, that none of them can compare to the unabashed awfulness that drowns "Slackers" in a heap of tasteless, outright appalling gags such as the full reveal of 50's actress Mamie van Doren's breasts, or a girl who continues with masturbation after an unwelcome intrusion by one of the main characters.
Underneath all of this dreck is a story that is ...uninteresting, to say the very least. It centers on three college friends, Dave (Devon Sawa), Jeff (Michael C. Maronna), and Sam (Jason Segel). In a listless and unrelentingly boring setup, we learn that they have made their way through college courses by way of cheating, using elaborate techniques to obtain testing materials days before the actual exam is administered.
The story supposedly begins when, during a mission to copy answers for a test in a class he does not even attend, Dave crosses paths with Angela ("Pearl Harbor's" Jamie King), and immediately takes an interest in her. After his objective is complete, he leaves his name and number on a piece of paper for her, only to have it fall into the hands of spurned bystander Ethan ("Rushmore's" Jason Schwartzman), who uses it as leverage against the trio of cheaters by forcing them to make him a date with Angela, the girl of his dreams... oh, does any of it really matter?
What will ensue in the following second half of the film is little more than a bizarre and often ludicrous mix of young romance and situational humor that practically chokes the few laughs it can muster out of its audience. The run-down excuse for a story could be overlooked if the comedy itself were enjoyably entertaining.
Take "American Pie" for example. The story was basically about four guys making a pact to lose their virginity, all the while experiencing sexual frustration and obstacles to the delight of its viewers. But in addition to the gross-outs and potty humor, there was a moral lesson at the center of the story that was ever-present, and its characters were actually learning something from their experiences.
No such luck here. Aside from the comedic debacles, the shot of van Doren's aging bust, the use of a "sock" puppet in a most unusual place, and various other clunker attempts at comedy, "Slackers" can't even squeeze one ounce of credible acting from its cast, including Schwartzman, whose peak performance in "Rushmore" makes one wonder what the hell he's doing in such a wreck as this. The film reduces him to little more than a whiny, obsessive, absurd twerp who is annoying from the very first frame. Sawa, Maronna, and Segel, all inhabit such loathsome characters that it's hard to do little else than despise them. King makes her first major role appearance as the standard, cliché-riddled, object of affection, but never takes it anywhere.
If for nothing else, Nicks's film is a warning against the type of movies that Hollywood seems all to ready to hand out to a widespread audience. Perhaps its lack of business, or just its outrageously insipid subject matter, will finally serve as a wake-up call to those who make the decision of what gets put on celluloid, and what gets shelved. The movie lacks charm, credible acting, sensible plot, or a solid sense of humor; as far as college comedies go, "Slackers" fails to make the grade.
2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!! 29 Jan 2002
By Monica Garreton - Published on Amazon.com
A hilarious movie starring Jason Schwartzman from Rushmore (another great one). Jason's character "Cool Ethan" is genius and the movie will have you laughing the whole way through.
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