National Lampoon's Dirty Movie

 (2010, 2011? Not sure when this was filmed.)

by Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

For those of us who went to college in the late sixties and early seventies, it is truly heartbreaking to see what has happened to The National Lampoon brand. In the magazine's early days, it was edgy, funny, original, and very often downright brilliant - imagine a smarter, totally uncensored version of the kind of material Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert do today. The writers included such comic geniuses as Doug Kenney and Michael O'Donoghue. When the company branched out into films, it mined the talents of some other terrific, if more mainstream, writers like Chris Miller and John Hughes, and made some flicks which are now beloved classics: Vacation and Animal House. There was a time when comedy junkies like me would buy anything with The National Lampoon name on it, knowing that at its very worst it would be better than just about any other source of humor, and at its best would be at the very zenith of American humor in the 20th century.

The years have not been kind to the franchise. In the last 20 years they're made exactly one comedy worth seeing (Van Wilder), and one that isn't too bad (Vegas Vacation). Every one since 2002 is cow flop. In fact, the brand has been so mismanaged that the name now means the opposite of what it once meant. People like me automatically stay away from anything prefixed by "The National Lampoon presents," knowing that at its best it will not be worthwhile and at its worst it will be heavy-handed, juvenile, trite, obvious, and generally unfunny. More depressing to me than any of those adjectives is the fact that their material is now just plain dumb. The brand which was once unafraid to publish Jean-Paul Sauvage, Philosopher Detective, has now become a receptacle for elementary school playground humor. Worst of all, they don't just develop their own weak projects, but they also slap their once-revered brand name on films after-the-fact, thus bestowing their blessing on weak projects developed by others. Why? Presumably they get a few bucks for the use of their name.

This is one of the worst, possibly THE worst in a long line of bad, sophomoric films released with the Lampoon imprimatur. It's such an amateurish effort at comedy that it would embarrass those two guys who made Epic Movie and Date Movie. Even Carlos Mencia wouldn't steal these jokes.

It is a film about making a film. The film-within-a-film, which occupies much of the running time, is a compilation of tasteless old-fashioned jokes delivered as non sequiturs, without a storyline. The jokes are the ones you and your friends exchanged at recess in the seventh grade. It is, more or less, a hard-R version of Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In. Pretty hip material, eh? This is the kind of project that could have played on drive-ins in the 70s, starring some washed-up vaudevillians like Keefe Braselle or Pinky Lee, with cameos by Henry Gibson and JoAnne Worley. The real National Lampoon guys of that time would have ridiculed it mercilessly if they chanced upon it, which they probably would not have, because they would have been busy trying to think up some obscure jokes about Tycho Brahe, or wondering what Tarzan might have been like if he had been raised by flamingos instead of apes.

The parent film, which is to say the shell around the film-within-a-film, basically consists of a bunch of guys arguing about whether to say the "n-word" in their film when they make tasteless jokes about black people, and debating about whether anybody would see such a film.

Jeez, I hope not.

And you shouldn't see this one either.


* widescreen anamorphic

* whatever







  No major reviews online


3.4 IMDB summary (of 10)


Video release



  • There are many topless women scattered throughout the film. The only one I could identify was Jeanine Hill as the Vienna Sausage Girl.



Our Grade:

If you are not familiar with our grading system, you need to read the explanation, because the grading is not linear. For example, by our definition, a C is solid and a C+ is a VERY good movie. There are very few Bs and As. Based on our descriptive system, this film is a:


Skip it.