Dorm Daze (August 9/04)
Does anybody remember when National Lampoon used to lend their name to good movies like Vacation and Animal House? While Dorm Daze isn't quite as bad as some of their more recent efforts (ie Van Wilder), it's still a far cry from their heyday in the late '70s and early '80s.
Set entirely over the course of one day inside a dormitory at a fictional college, there's little doubt that Dorm Daze has been filmed on a microscopic budget. Yet there are a number of familiar faces peppered through the movie's cast, most notably Tatyana Ali (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air) and Danielle Fishel (Boy Meets World). The story follows several students living within the dorm as they get into one wacky misunderstanding after another, to the extent that it's hard not to wonder if directors David and Scott Hillenbrand were trying to shatter the record for most wacky misunderstandings in a single film.
Dorm Daze is pretty much the definition of harmless fun; it's not terribly funny, though it essentially remains entertaining throughout. The energetic cast tries their hardest to make every single joke work, but aren't exactly given a whole lot to work with. The script, by Patrick Casey and Worm Miller, overemphasizes humor of the obvious sort - resulting in a frenetic film with few laughs.
The film is being marketed as a raunchy comedy along the lines of American Pie, but this is actually fairly tame stuff (particularly in comparison to that movie). Aside from a very brief instance of nudity and some swearing, Dorm Daze could've conceivably garnered a PG-13 rating - presumably much to the disgust of those viewers expecting a full-blown '80s style T&A-fest.