Take Me Home Tonight

Take Me Home Tonight

**1/2

Reviewed by: Robert Munro

It’s fair to say that Take Me Home Tonight hurtles unapologetically through the list of 80s-era movie clichés with as little thought as the steel ‘ball’ which lead man Matt (Topher Grace) must climb into, and be rolled down the street encased in, at the end of the film. It’s one of those daring, yet moronic, frat party kind-of stunts which provides a neat metaphor for the film (and in the film): big, clumsy, carelessly thrown together, yet still capable of providing several laughs along the way.

We know we’re in the 80s because The Buggles’ Video Killed The Radio Star opens the film, and we’re subsequently reminded of that tragic decade with big hair, bigger stereos and crummy video stores. It is in said crummy video store that Matt passes his days after graduating from a top university, unsure what to do with the rest of his life. He’s joined by best buddy Barry (Dan Fogler) - who plays the chunky, out-of-control yet still loveable friend who always gets the best lines in a movie like this – and twin sister Wendy (Anna Faris), who is dating meat-headed jock Kyle (Chris Pratt), who happens to be throwing the Labor Day party the three will attend that night.

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Matt still pines over high-school fantasy sweetheart Tori (Teresa Palmer), the girl he never had the guts to ask out. However, as movie luck would have it, she’s back in town and pops into the video store before announcing she’ll be at the party that night. Upon meeting her again Matt lies and claims to be a Goldman Sachs man – a high-flying banker just like Tori. Will he manage to blag convincingly about a fictitious job all night? Will he get the girl? Will Wendy dump knuckle-headed Jock? Will Bulbous Barry survive the night? What do you think?

There’s absolutely nothing at all original here. The plot and characters are so predictable that it’d be entirely possible to have the film on while you go about the housework: after all when was the last time you dusted behind the sofa? But that’s not to say that there isn’t anything to like from a script that delivers a reasonable amount of clever zingers. All the cast play their parts well enough too, with special pleasure being derived from Barry’s blundering escapades.

There’s just enough charm and witty one-liners to ensure that Take Me Home Tonight will find an audience through DVD rentals, or on one of the multitude of channels on a certain satellite television provider. It’s a film to be watched late at night, sunken into the sofa with one eye open. And then entirely forgotten about come the morning.

Reviewed on: 11 Sep 2011
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Take Me Home Tonight packshot
As the summer of 1988 winds down, three friends on the verge of adulthood attend an out-of-control party in celebration of their last night of unbridled youth.
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Director: Michael Dowse

Writer: Jackie Filgo, Jeff Filgo, Topher Grace, Gordon Kaywin

Starring: Topher Grace, Anna Faris, Dan Fogler, Teresa Palmer, Chris Pratt

Year: 2011

Runtime: 97 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

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