Not Another Teen Movie

on December 14, 2001 by Paul Clinton
   Just another awful spoof-athon, “Not Another Teen Movie” tries to patch together sketches parodying teen exploitation fare from the past two decades. As usual, the manic slapstick and too-raunchy-to-be-funny gags quickly drive it straight into the ground.

   Unlike “Young Frankenstein,” “Airplane” or the first “Naked Gun,” “Not Another Teen Movie” fails to stick to a story and carry it through to the end.

   The team of five writers jumps all over the map, lampooning their favorite stereotypes, scenes and cheesy dialogue from “The Breakfast Club,” “Risky Business,” “Cruel Intentions,” “She's All That,” “American Beauty” and many others.

   The familiar faces include “The Popular Jock” (Chris Evans), “The Token Black Guy” (Deon Richmond), “The Pretty Ugly Girl” (Chyler Leigh), “The Bitchy Cheerleader” (Jaime Pressly) and “The Cruelest Girl” (Mia Kirshner).

   The acting is fairly vacuous all around, and Joel Gallen, an MTV producer making his feature directorial debut, shows zero aptitude for setting up a joke with his camera. Mel Brooks may as well have never existed.

   During several scenes in the gag-fest, the writers go after the overheated “Cruel Intentions,” one of the funniest pieces of camp in recent memory. And it begs the question: What's the point? Many of the teen movies being sent up have a tongue-in-cheek tone already. That's the fun of watching them (the point is certainly not to learn something about the teen experience).

   “Not Another Teen Movie” is a relentless drain. It beats you up with trashy jokes that are quickly forgotten. Starring Chris Evans, Mia Kirshner, Chyler Leigh, Jaime Pressly and Deon Richmond. Directed by Joel Gallen. Written by Mike Bender, Adam Jay Epstein, Andrew Jacobson, Phil Beauman and Buddy Johnson. Produced by Brad Luff and Neal H. Moritz. A Columbia release. Comedy. Rated R for strong crude sexual content and humor, language and some drug content. Running time: 89 min

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