Movie Stats & Links
||Colin Hanks, Jack Black,
Catherine O'Hara, John Lithgow, Lily Tomlin
||Not too young.
||Could have been more.
||No gut-busters, but cute
||Too many to list.
||Scott Rudin, Van Toffler, David
Gale, Scott Aversano
"Orange County" isnít an easy movie to review. Itís
not your balls-out comedy as you think it might be. Itís not a serious
drama, either. But it is a movie with a message, and you may not like
it, nor appreciate the movie, but I liked "Orange County" for those
A Movie Review
As the story goes, Shaun (Colin Hanks), is your
typical, too smart for classes so he seems more of a stoner/surfer,
high school student. But when his buddy dies in a surfing accident,
Shaun is more like a lost soul until he finds this book left on the
beach. It is then that he decides he wants to be a writer, that he
really wants to get out of Orange County, and that his ticket to both
of these is to get into Stanford. A seeming shoe-in, according to his
guidance counselor played by Lily Tomlin, Shaun only applies to
Stanford. But the guidance counselor is a boob, sends the wrong
transcript, and Shaun isnít accepted. Distraught, Shaun doesnít really
know what to do. He enlists the help of his dad, John Lithgow, who is
divorced from mom, Catherine OíHara, but dad just blows him off. Mom,
on the other hand, is basically a drunk who doesnít want her baby to
leave home. Even his girlfriend, Ashley (Schuyler Fisk) tries to help
by getting one of the Stanford board members to meet Shaun, at his
house, where mom, step-dad, and brother, Lance (Jack Black), pretty
much blow any chance for Shaun to get into his dream college.
But whatís an older brother to do than help his younger brother
fulfill his dream? So Lance grabs Shaun and Ashley, and they make a
mad dash for Stanford to visit the Dean of Admissions (Harold Ramis)
and explain the mix-up. Things arenít that easy for the visit and more
and more Shaun hates his family, hates his life, and just wants to get
out of Orange County. What he finds out, however, is that lifeís
lessons and twistedness sometimes makes for the greatest writers, and
our boy Shaun, with mom and dad coming around in the nick of time,
well, Shaun makes probably the best decision for his life as a writer.
Like I wrote before, "Orange County" isnít the teen comedy you
might expect. Jack Black is slightly over the top, but not so much so
that it is annoying. Shaunís family is as messed up as most families,
and what son doesnít want to get away from the madness, thinking
college is the answer? Sure, the movie overextends some high school
clicks and makes a joke out some of the high school experiences, but
in the end, the movie does a good job at showing how sometimes things
arenít that bad when you step back and look at the whole picture.
Schuyler Fisk does a good job as the caring girlfriend, Catherine
OíHara and John Lithgow are great as the oddball parents, and Colin
Hanks does a great job as the "just looking for an answer of what he
wants to be, and also get away from his mixed up family" high school
You may not laugh out loud, you might hate this movie, but I really
like it and give "Orange County" 4 stars out of 5. If youíve got a
family you think is bizarre, can remember when you really thought you
had life figured out and that figuring it out meant leaving home and
going to college, and have a brother who you love, but sometimes find
him embarrassing, you too might like "Orange County." If youíre
looking for guys getting laid for the first time, this movie might not
be for you.
Thatís it for this one! Iím The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!