Movies »Heavyweights

HeavyweightsYes, I love a fat kids camp movie that comes from the creator of the Mighty Ducks. And I am not being droll–I've seen this movie at least three times. I know that doesn't necessarily mean it's good (I've inexplicably seen Lady Bugs twice) but, unlike Lady Bugs, which was a waste of wasted men (sorry for the memories of Rodney Dangerfield and Jonathan Brandis, you poor kid), I promise that this is actually a really good movie.

True, there are some elements that might seem to contradict such a statement: I remember a scene in which Ben Stiller gets his face farted on; in fact Ben Stiller's turning it up to eleven the whole time might be a bit much… Oh, and the tag line (They never met a hot dog they didn't like … until now) makes absolutely no sense–there's no hot dog in the movie that the fat kids decide not to like. So if you're watching the movie, waiting patiently for the fat kids to come across the hot dog they don't like, you can stop waiting.

But still, there's so much to recommend: Paul Feig (creator of Freaks and Geeks) is one of the nice councilors, Stiller's performance, as over the top as it may be, really works–I honestly think this is his finest work to date. There's also a really touching scene by the abandoned Go Kart track and a thrilling Apache Relay race versus the rich kids camp (I'm not going to tell you who wins).

But I think the real reason this film is way better than it deserves to be is Judd Apatow's script (he wrote and directed The 40 Year Old Virgin, produced The Cable Guy and Anchorman, and wrote and directed The Larry Sanders show and Freaks and Geeks). And if my review hasn't convinced you, read this hilariously serious and sincere analysis.

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Posted on March 26, 2007

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