Review: “Eurotrip”

If there’s one thing obvious about “Eurotrip” is that its writers have never been outside the United States. Jokes here are dumb as a post and rely totally on the old stereotypes such as the British being all soccer hooligans, Eastern Europe being a wasteland where only 80’s shows are broadcast, and Amsterdam being full of the world’s biggest sexual deviants.

There’s no insights or new attempts at clever cultural humour. Yet, oddly enough this plainly stupid comedy is consistently funny, capturing a little bit of that naughty travelling spirit of those dumb sex comedies of the 80’s but without resorting to gross out visual gags.

One benefit is the cast. Aside from “Buffy” co-star Michelle Trachtenberg and some fun cameos, the cast are unknowns who nicely underplay their parts. There’s no wild Stifler or screaming Will Ferrell to steal the show, thus leaving the gags to work on their own merit.

Likewise the ridiculous scenarios and setups make fun of the central cast’s foibles and ignorance far more than taking the mickey out of the Europeans. As a result the premise which could’ve been offensive turns out to be far more self-effacing than expected. Cameos from Lucy Lawless, Kristin Kreuk and Matt Damon are fun and slotted in just enough to move the gags along without ever stealing from the rest of the show.

With heaps of gags pouring out thick and fast, many do fall on their face (the creepy Italian train rider for one) but they fly by so quickly that there’s usually some laughs or nudity around the corner. The direction is solid and at times interesting, making some truly awful scripted gags into decent visual laughs. It lacks the smarts and talent that pushed “Road Trip” and “Old School” into modern classics of the sex comedy genre but as stupid comedies go this is a lot better than most studio fare out there.