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Fired Up
Genre Comedy
Year: 2009
 
Review:

What would you think if you heard a film had been submitted to the MPAA 8 times to obtain a PG-13 rating, was written by four writers credited as "Freedom Jones" and contained no nudity whatsoever, after marketing a poster with a giant F.U. for Fired Up? Well the F.U. part certainly rings a bell in this luke warm attempt at a post-90s teen comedy.

For starters, one of Fired Up's bros Eric Christian Olsen, starred as Austin in Not Another Teen Movie in 2001. Now forgive me for saying this, but he's starring in another teen movie some 8 years later... the last time I checked teenage hood only lasted 7 years? Never mind the fact that Olsen is now 31, the majority of the cast are probably supporting the kids and family back home. Okay, so we all know that teen movies rarely actually star teens... but there really should be a cut-off, I mean how long did it take before Jaime Pressley stopped thinking she was a high school cheerleader?

Enough whining... Fired Up is another teen movie that recalls movies like Bring It On and Wedding Crashers. Eric Christian Olsen and Nicholas D'Agosto headline the movie as Nick Brady and Shawn Colfax, who make a passable Owen Wilson/Vince Vaughn comedy duo. Their lines are sharp and it's interesting to have moderately intelligent teen guys taking up the slack. In fact, if you discount Dawson, it's difficult to think back to a time when the title teen guy characters showed even moderate intelligence... It's either too intelligent, Revenge of the Nerds or too vacuous and sensitive, American Pie.

Unfortunately, Fired Up doesn't play the nudity or laugh card hard enough to appease it's target audience. It promotes teen male promiscuity as a rite of passage to manhood, while babe hood is given a misogynistic "angel or slut" wash over. The bros and hos tag line "2 Guys, 300 Girls" is a tad misleading... with a tip of the hat to more adventurous teen movies like American Pie and Porky's.

Fired Up just doesn't heat up and instead of retreating to the safety of a few boobs and a few belly laughs, opts for the luke warm... option. The performances are okay like milk on expiry day and the laughs are too sparse for this kind of outing. It's all been done before and the only real promise of fun is the jocks taking a walk in cheerleader outfits.

There's plenty of eye candy for the horn dog teens with Molly Sims, AnnaLynne McCord and Sarah Roemer strutting their stuff, but it just doesn't have the depth to make a teen dream classic. John Michael Higgins is always a welcome contender, but is no funnier than David Cross in She's the Man.

All in all, Fired Up is predictable, formulaic, silly and lightly humorous. These traits are despised by movie critics, but usually add up to a half-decent popcorn flick to wile away the hours. The pom-poms, cheerleaders, football jocks and teen romance have all been done better before and Fired Up feels like a lost movie from the late '90s, especially with a 20-30 something cast playing high school juniors!? The trailer is like a highlights reel, so it's really the sort of movie to watch if you've got nothing better to do.

The bottom line: Harmless.

 

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