During the 1980s Rodney Dangerfield had a kind of comeback in the film world. He made a slew of silly comedies (of the style he is famous for) and they found an audience. He was once again a respected man.
In this college comedy, Thornton Melon (Rodney Dangerfield – Caddyshack, Easy Money) is a self-made millionaire who has money but no respect. Desperate for a change in his life, Thornton decides to surprise his son, Jason (Keith Gordon – Dressed to Kill, All That Jazz), at college. After getting over the shock of his father just dropping by Jason lets him know that he is considering dropping out of college. Thornton cannot believe it and vows to do anything to keep his son in college…even enrolling himself.
Thornton secures his admission to the college by making a huge donation. Being his fun-loving self, Thornton soon becomes a popular figure on campus. His money allows him to show everyone a great time and get himself out of any sticky situations he finds himself in. His luck seems to have run out when he is threatened with expulsion unless he passes a multi-part oral exam.
Though the film features pretty simplistic and infantile humour, there are some interesting moments. The film was the first and last big screen appearance by comedian Sam Kinison. He is perfect for the part of the wound-too-tightly professor. Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (author of Slaughterhouse Five) makes a brief cameo as himself. Finally, a very young Robert Downey Jr. pops up as Jason's best friend. His portrayal of an odd young man just alludes to things to come for this talented actor.
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