Wet Hot American Summer (2001)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: As comedy, Wet Hot American Summer is a slapdash, fragmented affair that misses more often than hits. As parody, it fails because it attempts to satirize something ridiculous and self-parodying in itself.

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Movie Info

The setting is Camp Firewood, the year 1981. It's the last day before everyone goes back to the real world, but there's still a summer's worth of unfinished business to resolve. At the center of the action is camp director Beth, who struggles to keep order while she falls in love with the local astrophysics professor. He is busy trying to save the camp from a deadly piece of NASA's Skylab which is hurtling toward earth. All that, plus: a dangerous waterfall rescue, love triangles, misfits, cool kids, and talking vegetable cans. The questions will all be resolved, of course, at the big talent show at the end of the day.
Rating: R (for strong sexual content, language and a drug sequence)
Genre: Comedy
Directed By: David Wain
Written By: Michael Showalter , David Wain
In Theaters: limited
On DVD:
Runtime:
USA Films - Official Site

Cast

Michael Showalter
as Coop/Alan Shemper
Ken Marino
as Victor
Gabriel Millman
as Caped Boy
Kevin Thomas Conroy
as Medieval Kid
Madeline Blue
as Cure Girl
Cassidy Ladden
as Mallrat Girl
Peter Salett
as Guitar Dude
H. Jon Benjamin
as Can of Vegetables
Ian Helfer
as Bear Claw Coach
Avi Setton
as Standup Comic
Kyle Gallner
as Bobby's Buddy
Kathleen Pandolfo
as Godspell Girl
Zachary Montgomery-Wicks
as Gail's Boy Camper
Danny Hopkins
as Raft Camper No. 1
Christopher Connors
as Raft Camper No. 2
Matt Carmeci
as Bunk Boy
Stephen O'Brien
as Juke Box Kid No. 1
Timothy Gasiewski
as Juke Box Kid No. 2
Angel Berlane
as Friends, Friends Girl No. 1
Christi Berlane
as Friends, Friends Girl No. 2
Bob Walz
as Drug Dealer
Joseph Kariuki
as Kenyan Runner
Donna Mitchell
as Gene's Wife
Joe Bryan
as Counselor
Sandra Kennedy
as Counselor
Keith Oney
as Counselor
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News & Interviews for Wet Hot American Summer

Critic Reviews for Wet Hot American Summer

All Critics (66) | Top Critics (24)

The skewering of underdog sports clichés, horny teen staples and Vietnam-trauma melodrama is long overdue and perfectly irreverent in execution.

Full Review… | July 28, 2011
Film.com
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | May 19, 2008
Variety
Top Critic

Have a good summer.

Full Review… | June 22, 2007
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

August 9, 2002
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic

For all its failings, Wet Hot maintains energy and high spirits over most of its length. The trouble is, such energy and spirits are not infectious, and the movies it mocks were better.

Full Review… | February 8, 2002
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

This is supposed to be funny? It was so depressing I almost started to cry.

January 6, 2002
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Wet Hot American Summer

incredible that this many talented people could be in something so moronic.

jay nixon
jay nixon
½

"Wet Hot American Summer" follows a group of camp friends as they live life to the fullest on their last day of camp. That is literally the only plot to this film, notwithstanding a few character arcs along the way. It really just boils down to the comedy and whether or not you buy into it. For as dumb as this film is, I had a blast watching it. Almost all of the jokes worked for me, even the ones that made no sense, because I felt like that was their plan all along. This cult classic has been really making the rounds ever since it's initial release, and I must say, I completely see why. This film is certainly not for everyone, especially those who watch comedies for something profoundly clever in the writing. This film is exactly what it is. The cast was hired all just before the peak of their career, so it's nice to see them interacting with each other before they became rich and famous. In the end, "Wet Hot American Summer" is the type of film to just sit back, relax and enjoy with friends. I had a blast, and even though the movie really isn't all that great overall, I have no regrets recommending it.

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Justifiably a cult classic, a perfect balance between fondness for and mockery of summer camp culture: the activities, the personalities, the lifers... Over the top, caricatured, ridiculous... but sweet, too. Hilarious, under-appreciated, proto-Apatow comedy with good performances by comic actors we've come to know and love since.

Daniel Perry
Daniel Perry

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