Road Trip (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Todd Phillips|
|Music by||Mike Simpson|
|Distributed by||DreamWorks Pictures|
|Box office||$119.8 million|
Road Trip is a 2000 American comedy film directed by Todd Phillips, written by Scot Armstrong and Phillips. The film stars Breckin Meyer, Seann William Scott, Paulo Costanzo, and DJ Qualls as four college friends who embark on an 1800-mile road trip to retrieve an illicit tape mistakenly mailed to a girlfriend.
The film is told as a series of flashbacks narrated by Barry, as he leads a group of visitors around his college campus.
Josh Parker and Tiffany Henderson are childhood friends who became high school sweethearts, but had to deal with a long-distance relationship when Josh enrolls at the (fictional) University of Ithaca and Tiffany enrolls at the (fictional) University of Austin, promising continued fidelity to one another. Eventually, when Josh loses touch with Tiffany, Josh believes Tiffany might be seeing other people. Nonetheless, he makes a daily recorded video blog to her. Josh asks Rubin to mail his blog tape to Tiffany before leaving for class.
In class, Josh is failing Ancient Philosophy and the professor informs him he needs a B+ on his mid-term to pass the semester, and furthermore, to re-enroll. Still worrying about Tiffany, Josh's best friend E.L. Faldt convinces him to accept his friend Beth Wagner, who has a loving attraction for Josh. Jacob, the T.A. of Philosophy, has an obsessive crush on Beth and is jealous of Josh, aware of Beth's feelings for him. During E.L.'s party, Josh attends and E.L. holds an auction of several women, including Beth. Jacob also attends the party, and Beth, scared of Jacob, convinces Josh to outbid Jacob. They quickly escape to Josh's room, and videotape their intercourse with Josh's blog recorder.
The next morning, Josh arrives in the room in a very jovial mood, confessing that he slept with Beth. His friends play his tape but Josh discovers that Rubin accidentally mailed the sex tape to Tiffany, having confused it with Josh's blog tape for Tiffany. Josh then receives a voicemail from Tiffany saying that she didn't call him because her grandfather had died and she will be away from school until Monday. Accompanied by E.L. and Rubin, Josh asks Kyle to tag along, mainly because he needs Kyle's car. Kyle is a shy loner who lives in constant fear of his overly strict father, Earl Edwards, the rightful owner of their car. The group heads out to drive the nearly 1,800 miles (2,900 km) to Austin and back in three days and leave Barry to take care of Mitch, their pet snake.
Taking a supposed 'short-cut', they come upon a small collapsed bridge and are annoyed that they will waste 5 hours back tracking. E.L. and Rubin convince the other two that they could jump the gap, à la Evel Knievel. Kyle objects but they proceed. They make it across, but the car is effectively destroyed upon landing when the wheels fall off. They get out and discuss what to do next, and the car explodes. So, they continue on foot and stop at a motel. Rubin tries to score marijuana off the eccentric, unsympathetic motel clerk and is informed that Kyle's credit card is maxed out. E.L. looks for transportation, and talks an otherwise rather savvy blind woman, Brenda, who works for a local school for the blind, into letting him take a bus away to be repaired. The guys hit the road again.
Meanwhile, Kyle's father, Earl, tries to pay for a meal with the maxed out card, but is denied service. He then begins an all-out search for Kyle when he is informed by the police that Kyle's car was found blown up and Kyle is missing. On their way to Austin, the group goes through a series of misadventures, such as two of them making deposits at a sperm bank to raise needed funds, Rubin successfully lying his way into letting the group stay overnight at an all-Black fraternity house at the University of Tennessee, and a wild visit with Barry's grandparents. Since Josh's books were destroyed in the exploded car, he calls his professor to ask for an extension on his midterm exam. Jacob answers the phone, pretends to be the professor, and grants a fake extension.
While Barry is trying to feed Mitch, Beth comes back to the room inquiring of Josh's whereabouts; Barry informs her that Josh has feelings for her. Jacob walks in and informs Beth that he tricked Josh about the mid-term extension, and that he is about to fail Philosophy. Mitch bites Barry in the hand, causing a vicious struggle which ends with Mitch landing on Jacob, biting his neck, and making him pass out.
The group finally gets to Austin and, once they get to Tiffany's dorm, Josh eventually intercepts the tape he sent to Tiffany, who has just arrived back at school. But Earl shows up, furious over what happened with the car and the credit card and threatens to drag Kyle back home with him. Kyle finally summons the confidence to stand up to him and states that he is going back to school with his friends. Earl assaults him and confusion reigns in an all-out mini-riot in the dorm's lobby. Josh and Tiffany retreat and discuss their relationship, but Beth calls to warn Josh that he has been tricked by Jacob, and while Josh talks to her, Tiffany starts to watch the tape, which turns out to be nothing but Barry mooning for the camera. Josh now has 48 hours to get back to school or else he will fail his midterm and the course, and, possibly, be kicked out of college. After they talk, Josh and Tiffany agree to break up but remain friends. Josh and his friends head back to school and Josh arrives just in time to take his midterm – with a little, albeit illegal, help from Beth.
Barry closes the film, ending the visitors' tour by confirming to them that Josh passed the course, that Josh and Beth are still together, a happy couple still making videos, that Jacob eventually became a leader of a cult and committed suicide (the only one in his cult to do so), that Rubin became a successful marijuana cultivator, and lastly relates humorous facts about E.L.'s and Kyle's futures.
- Breckin Meyer as Josh Parker
- Seann William Scott as E.L. Faldt
- Paulo Costanzo as Rubin Carver
- DJ Qualls as Kyle Edwards
- Amy Smart as Beth Wagner
- Tom Green as Barry Manilow, the college tour guide and narrator of the film
- Rachel Blanchard as Tiffany Henderson, Josh's long distance girlfriend
- Anthony Rapp as Jacob Schultz
- Fred Ward as Earl Edwards
- Andy Dick as Motel Clerk
- Ethan Suplee as Ed Bradford
- Jaclyn DeSantis as Heather
- Rhoda Griffis as Tour Group Mom
- Edmund Lyndeck as Jack Manilow, Barry's grandfather
- Ellen Albertini Dow as Mrs. Manilow, Barry's grandmother
- Jessica Cauffiel as Wrong Tiffany Henderson
- Mia Amber Davis as Rhonda
- Mary Lynn Rajskub as Blind Brenda
- Horatio Sanz as French Toast Guy
- Jimmy Kimmel as Corky's voice
The fictional University of Ithaca is based on both Ithaca College and Cornell University both located in Ithaca, New York. Filming took place on the campuses of Woodward Academy, Georgia Tech, Emory University, and the University of Georgia. The university seen in a flyover in the opening scene is actually Harvard University, the same footage was later used in the film Old School in 2003. The diner scene was shot in Lawrenceville, Georgia at the Gwinnett Diner, as it says on the coffee mugs. One of the final scenes of the tour was filmed at Founders Park at the University of Southern California.
Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gives the film an approval rating of 57% based on 91 reviews. The consensus is: "Some humor is hit or miss, depending on the audience tastes, but the movie is funny overall. Mixed reviews for the cast, especially for MTV's Tom Green." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 55 out of 100 based on 32 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
A direct-to-video sequel entitled Beer Pong was released on August 11, 2009, this time by Paramount Famous Productions as Paramount Pictures had acquired DreamWorks' back catalog in its 2006 purchase of the company (since undone). Only two of the original cast or crew appear in the sequel film, DJ Qualls as Kyle Edwards and Rhoda Griffis as Tour Group Mom.
- "ROAD TRIP (15)". British Board of Film Classification. June 1, 2000. Retrieved November 23, 2012.
- "Road Trip (2000)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2016-02-04.
- "Filming locations for Road Trip (2000)". IMDb. Retrieved 2007-08-02.
- "Top 5 Colleges Used in Feature Films". About.com: College Life. Retrieved 2007-08-02.
- Road Trip at Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2012-07-02.
- "Road Trip". Metacritic. Retrieved 2016-09-13.
- Trailer for Road Trip II: Beer Pong Arrives
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