Van Wilder 2
See, there are reasons to see this film.

Theatrical Release Date: 12/01/2006
Director: Mort Nathan
Cast: Kal Penn, Lauren Cohan, Daniel Percival

As a direct result of audiences worldwide clamoring for a sequel, National Lampoon has delivered “Van Wilder 2: The Rise of Taj”.

Wait a minute … no one asked for a sequel … and certainly not without the main character from the first film, Van Wilder himself, Ryan Reynolds.

I though about catching this in theaters on one of those nights when I didn’t have anything better to do but the weird thing is that every night I had something better to do … eat, sleep, watch TV, decoupage.

In any case, my Netflix queue finally worked itself down to this one and I have to admit I was at least mildly amused. Sure, there is no Ryan Reynolds … but there’s also no Tara Reid! Advantage … push.

As one might expect from a sequel, there’s not a lot of new ground here. Frankly, the most surprising thing was that this was actually released in theaters to begin with.

The new trend seems to be going direct to DVD with half-hearted sequels to moderately successful films. In this case, I suppose someone thought it was good enough to deserve the extra marketing and distribution costs.

They were sort of right.

In “The Rise of Taj”, Kal Penn’s character travels to England for graduate school and hopes to continue the tradition of gaining the affection of young, beautiful co-eds. He befriends a gaggle of loveable losers and they proceed to take on the snobbish elite at the school … a tactic tried so many other times a la “Revenge of the Nerds”.

All of the predictable plot points are pursued and I’m patting myself on the posterior for such powerful and perfect alliteration. If you liked the first film and just need something to pass the time, “The Rise of Taj” isn’t completely without merit … Just don’t expect anything new or original.

Although I did have an okay time watching this, I just can’t push it over the top and give it more than a 2 out of 5. I can only hope that the folks associated with National Lampoon don’t feel the need for a “Van Wilder 3: How The Bulldog Got His Bitch Back” … that would be a bit much, even for me.