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Goofy Road Trip Movies: Road Trip Review

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Road Trip review

Road Trip (2000) Photo: Dreamworks

When researching movies to include in our “Road Trip Movies” project, we had a long meeting which involved us yelling out random movie names as suddenly as they occurred to us. Some were pretty obscure, and some more widely-known. Road Trip probably falls into the latter category, mainly because all five of us in the meeting had at least heard of the movie, if not seen it. As a teenager of this era, this was a well-known movie in my repertoire, so I stepped up to add this one to my list. I wouldn’t say it’s my favorite movie, but it’s definitely a memorable one!

The Plot

The plot of Road Trip is fairly typical of your late-90s, early-2000s teen comedies (think the American Pie franchise). A college student is in a long distance relationship with his high school girlfriend, doesn’t hear from her for a while, assumes she’s lost interest, sleeps with a sexy girl who is not his girlfriend, accidentally videotapes it, and then accidentally mails that videotape to his long-distance girlfriend. (What do you mean, that never happened to you in college?!) In order to retrieve the incriminating tape, the main dude Josh (Breckin Meyer) sets off with his buddies (Seann William Scott, Paulo Costanzo, and DJ Qualls) on a road trip from New York to Texas. Along the way, they accidentally wreck their car by trying to jump over a broken bridge, steal a school bus from a blind woman, donate sperm to make some extra cash, and stay at an African American frat house. Eventually they make it to Austin, Josh retrieves the tape, and then he and his girlfriend Tiffany (Rachel Blanchard) decide to break up anyway. The four friends hot-foot it back to New York so Josh can make it to his midterm exam on time, and he ends up getting together with the girl who caused all this trouble, Beth (Amy Smart).

The Vehicles

Ford Taurus: Road Trip Review

1989 Ford Taurus Image: IMCDB

The vehicles aren’t anywhere close to being the main stars of Road Trip like they are in so many other movies. In this movie, the first car to be featured is a 1989 Ford Taurus, owned by Kyle (DJ Qualls). In fact, the only reason the three others invite Kyle on this road trip is because he has a car (Kyle is kind of a nerd, although by the end of the movie he’s lost his virginity to a large black woman and become firm friends with his road-tripping buddies). While it’s not the most glamorous car on the planet, Kyle’s car serves the guys well… until they total it and accidentally blow it up, that is.

Chevy Van school bus: Road Trip Review

1985 Chevrolet Van Image: IMCDB

The second vehicle, the stolen (well, “borrowed” really) school bus, is a 1985 Chevy Van. It looks fairly unremarkable in that it’s like any other school bus, but it gets the guys to Austin in comfort, although perhaps not style.

Our Road Trip Review

It might not be the most thought-provoking movie in the world, but I enjoyed Road Trip the first time (okay, the first five times) (okay, I owned it on VHS) I watched it. As a more mature adult these days, I imagine I’d find it pretty dumb, but for its time it was definitely a hit in my book. As far as road trip movies go, it’s a solid choice—but if you’re looking for something on the more intellectual side, you’re probably best looking elsewhere.

  • Cat HilesManaging Editor

    Catherine Hiles is a native Brit currently based in Dayton, Ohio. Don't ask how that happened. Cat has written about a variety of subjects, from dog training to fashion, and counts running and cooking among her hobbies. Cat lives with her husband, Ben; their daughter, Rose; and their collection of animals, including an energetic mutt, an elderly basset hound, and a jerk cat. See more articles by Cat.