A Bumbling Bodyguard
by: Steven Brill
Starring: Owen Wilson, Troy Gentile, Nate Hartley, David Dorfman, Alex Frost, Leslie Mann, Josh Peck, Danny McBride
Released by: Paramount Pictures
Short: Three adolescent boys hire an unlikely bodyguard to protect them from the high school bully in this tepid teen comedy.
This One Is for Teenagers Only
by Jenny Peters
As “Drillbit Taylor,” actor Owen Wilson once again plays his favorite character: a slightly off-kilter, stoner-ish loser, who is nonetheless lovable. The problem is, that guy is getting kind of boring, especially in this story of three geeky teenage boys–one freakishly skinny, one roly-poly, and one tiny for his age–whose first day of high school becomes every kid's worst nightmare. They catch the eye of the school's certifiably psychopathic bully (well played by Alex Frost) and he and his buddy proceed to make the boys' lives a daily misery.
The trio decides to pool their limited resources and hire a bodyguard to protect them on and off campus; enter Drillbit Taylor (after a funny sequence of interviews with real bodyguard types), a homeless veteran who showers naked on the beach and lives in a cardboard shanty. He definitely needs the job, but the problem is that he's anti-violence, thus isn't the greatest protector the teens could have chosen.
Created by some of the same team that gave the world “Superbad” (writer Seth Rogen and producer Judd Apatow), “Drillbit Taylor” tries to find the magic of that super-funny teen comedy, but falls far short. It's all a bit too familiar, and while everyone involved gives it their best, the laughs are sporadic and the cornpone is piled high.
Tweeners and young teenagers might possibly find the film amusing, but if you are out of high school and have seen Owen Wilson's previous work (think “You, Me, and Dupree”), “Drillbit Taylor” is certain to feel like a misguided rehash of better, funnier movies.
||(Updated: 03/21/08 BLS)