The Boys & Girls Guide To Getting Down (2006)

DVD Cover (First Look Home Entertainment)
Genres: Comedy, Mockumentary, Urban Comedy
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Paul Sapiano Paul Sapiano
Cricket Leigh Cricket Leigh
Kat Turner Kat Turner
John McGarr John McGarr
Natalie Taylor Natalie Taylor
Dominique Purdy Dominique Purdy

6.6 / 10 - Overall Rating

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Review by Kari Byron's Sex Cyborg
Added: June 05, 2008
The Boys & Girls Guide to Getting Down is pretty much exactly what it says it is. As the film begins, the narration states that kids all over the world are "getting down," and this guide will help you too in doing so. Divided into various chapters, The Guide provides tips and lessons on how to have a successful night out on the town. This does not entail that you will learn the proper amount to tip a waiter at a fancy restaurant but instead a mixologist at your choice bar. Just to be sure we are on the same page, the main aspects of "getting down" presented include: clubbing, getting drunk, scoring drugs, and promiscuous sexual activity.

The setting for the The Guide is Los Angeles' nightlife scene where hipsters, trendies, poseurs, and others of that ilk meander. With its semi-mockumentary outlook, several twentysomethings are followed around as they attempt to get down at various clubs and house parties. Tips are brought up as dos and don'ts while observing the behaviors of these characters in action. In a Discovery Channel fashion, a male-female duo dryly narrates the film through nicely segmented chapters, such as: "Getting In," "Last Call," "Merits of Marijuana," and "Pussy Power."

Half of the material may not come about as too original, but the overall parodied feel of educational school films in accord with the manner of tone and contents presented make for a very minty fresh style. Slick visual aids of helpful charts and graphs pop up with information regarding the subject at hand. Then there is the group of scientists that periodically come into the picture traversing their research which tries to explain the ways of getting down through multiple studies and experiments (usually with use of lab mice).

Although the lessons to getting down are of spoof, the majority of them are not without any verities; half or more of them are seemingly informative guidelines. To my dismay, I have noticed that some of the humor soars above heads since it can be very deadpan at times (noting the narration in particular). For example, when The Guide advises on the right time to drive under the influence, or when it acknowledges there being two categories that drugs can fall under, one labeled as "sketchy" and the other as "fun," you have to keep in mind that it is still maintaining a satirical style and is not condoning any behaviors.

The comedy is found all over in many forms, such as: sight gags, slapstick, observational, situational, and drug humor. I am a straight edge fellow (not to be confused with arrogant "sXe" scenesters), and I generally find drug humor to be insipid, but as offered in The Boys & Girls Guide to Getting Down, I found it all to be amusing. Being that most of the content which the film satirizes is, so to speak, not my cup of tea, seeing it sprightly mocked may be why I found it so funny. But, I feel it can certainly be found more hilarious to those who can actually relate and likely laugh at having been in the same predicaments displayed. Though focusing on L.A. nightlife and lifestyles, The Guide can be applied to young adults of the type everywhere.

Surprisingly, amongst all of the cast members, the only recognizable faces were Dennis Haskins (Mr. Belding from Saved by the Bell), Efren Ramirez (Pedro from Napoleon Dynamite), and Kat Turner (having a minor role as Dori in Inland Empire); the former two having only brief cameos. One of the several characters that I think needs a little mentioning is Dominque Purdy as Johnny, who seems to take on a Dave Chappelle-like persona. I find it to be a nice accomplishment when a movie succeeds without having any big names attached, especially a comedy.

My expectations figured a film like this would only work as a short production, but when the credits rolled, I did not think it slacked nor grew stale for a single moment during the entire ninety-odd-minute duration. I can not actually say if director Paul Sapiano is one to look for in future cinema, but I feel he has created an indie comedy gem with his debut The Boys & Girls Guide to Getting Down. As a concluding side note, the film only caters to heterosexuals, but no worries, for Sapiano's next movie is entitled The Boys & Girls Guide to Being Gay.

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