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College – Movie Review

<b>College | Daily Variety | September 02, 2008 | Nelson, Rob </b>

An MGM release of an Element Films presentation, in association with Lift Prods. Produced by Adam Rosenfelt, Marc Schaberg. Executive producer, Sam Nazarian. Coproducer, John J. Anderson. Associate producers, Julie Dangel, Malcolm Petal.

Directed by Deb Hagan. Screenplay, Dan Callahan, Adam Ellison. Camera (color), Dan Stoloff; editor, David Codron; music, Transcenders; music supervisors, Joel C. High, Rebecca Rienks; production designer, Ethan Tobman; set decorator, Dorree Cooper; costume designer, Caroline Marx. Reviewed at Kerasotes Block E Stadium 15, Minneapolis, Aug. 28, 2008. MPAA Rating: R. Running time: 94 MIN.

With: Drake Bell, Kevin Covais, Andrew Caldwell, Haley Bennett, Nick Zano, Ryan Pinkston, Camille Mana, Nathalie Walker, Verne Troyer, Alona Tal, Gary Owen.

Hardly superbad, but sorta OK, “College” solves for X in an equation with young TV actors plus fake IDs, bare skin and bodily fluids. Summer’s final weekend may draw underagers to pic’s familiarly tapped keg, wherein a road trip brings three geeky, horny high school boys to a college campus for American pie, frat-house hazing and the nerds’ revenge, in that order. Begrudging chuckles come via ultra-crude gags, none yuckier than that of the “pre-frosh” trio doing unsanitary body shots off a furry jock called Bearcat.

Sporting sideburns, Nickelodeon alum Drake Bell earns pic’s few mellow moments as a cutie photographer who traipses from one barely delineated g.f. (Alona Tal) to another (Haley Bennett). Andrew Caldwell and former “American Idol” contestant Kevin Covais steal one or two scenes apiece as, respectively, the tubby slob who scarfs cereal straight from the box and the four-eyed wimp whose physical education is limited to lifting physics textbooks. Well-paced pic, shot in New Orleans, looks intermittently dark and splotchy. Music is embarrassingly out of date; opening credits are splayed on jerseys, cigstrewn concrete, a cell phone and, yes, pre-frosh flesh.