Things To Do

Miss March (R) *

In this film still released by Fox Searchlight picture, Zach Cregger, left, and Trevor Moore are shown in a scene from, "Miss March."
In this film still released by Fox Searchlight picture, Zach Cregger, left, and Trevor Moore are shown in a scene from, "Miss March."

By Roger Moore, The Orlando Sentinel

A cut-rate Apatow-ish raunch comedy by a bargain-bin Paul Rudd (Zach Cregger) and a Jason Segal/Seann William Scott wannabe (Trevor Moore), this Playboy fantasy farce is one of those painful comedies in which the strain to be funny shows.

The stars of fringe cable TV’s The Whitest Guys You Know co-wrote, co-star and co-directed this comedy about two mismatched pals who take a road trip to see the ex-girlfriend who became a Playboy playmate. Eugene (Cregger) is the nerdy guy who co-hosts abstinence lectures in middle schools with his chaste girlfriend, Cindi (Raquel Alessi). They’re saving themselves for marriage, or at least prom night. But on his way to a reluctant coupling, Eugene gets drunk, falls, bonks his head and slips into a four-year coma. Best-bud Tucker (Moore) revives him with a whack on the head with a baseball bat and takes his atrophied pal on a road trip to the Playboy mansion, where Cindi has gone from Miss Purity to Miss March.

Scruffy moments and scruffier characters work, like the classmate-turned-rap star (Craig Robinson, always good for a laugh); the repeated Eugene-is-too-weak-to-stand moments; the furious girlfriend (Molly Stanton) who has fireman friends across America trying to chase down and kill Tucker, all for a date that went horribly wrong.

The abstinence lectures, complete with VD photo illustrations, are worth a giggle. But the road trip at the heart of the movie is as dull as the real drive from mid-America to the L.A. Playboy Mansion. Miss March feels as if it started as Miss February (its original title) by the time that final bowel movement hits.

Cast: Trevor Moore, Zach Cregger, Raquel Alessi, Molly Stanton, Craig Robinson, Hugh Hefner.

Directors/screenwriters: Zach Cregger, Trevor Moore.

Producers: Vince Cirrincione, Tobie Haggerty, Tom Jacobson, Steven J. Wolfe.

A Fox Searchlight release. Running time: 90 minutes. Strong crude and sexual content, nudity, pervasive language and some drug use. Playing at area theaters.

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