DEAD MAN ON CAMPUS (1998)

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Christopher

This movie is horrifying! I had never seen this before but this is another one I think Elizabeth and her family watched a lot when she was a kid. It’s pretty funny at times but mostly it’s about death and that would of freaked me out as a kid. This movie has a conversation where two colleges kids try to convince each other to kill themselves! Way too scary.

Elizabeth

Like Encino Man, we watched Dead Man on Campus on my birthday because it’s one of my all-time favorites and also just so happens to be another family favorite of mine.

It’s a little weirder to say that about Dead Man on Campus than Encino Man, though, which is something I realized almost immediately after starting it with Chris. Dead Man on Campus is about two college freshmen who, after wasting most of the semester getting high and having sex, try to find a suicidal roommate. This is because they stumbled upon a rule that says the roommates of a student who kills themselves will automatically receive straight A’s. Soooo it’s not the typical family film.

BUT IT IS SO AMAZING. I’m sure everyone has a movie (or at least they should) that just makes them laugh every time, no matter how many times they’ve seen it. Dead Man on Campus is that for me. There’s one scene I want to talk about, and I know my mom and sister will already know exactly what scene it is without me even saying anything else about it.

Cooper (Mark-Paul Gosselaar) and Josh (Tom Everett Scott) need to know who on campus could potentially be their suicidal roommate, so they decide to break in to some kind of student record place. They’re pretty much completely decked out in full-on tactical gear, first running through the quad by zig-zagging around trees (for no reason). At one point, one of them slips in such a way that was obviously not scripted, but they just keep going, and it’s so fucking funny. Once they get to the roof of the building, Cooper decides that they need code names; he’s Panther, Josh is Dinah. Josh insists that his code name should be changed, but Cooper straight up ignores him.

Josh lowers Cooper into the building, about 1, maybe 2 stories down, Mission Impossible style, which clearly doesn’t work in real life because Josh can’t remotely hold Cooper steady. The entire time Cooper is being lowered, he’s flailing around whisper-yelling “Steady Dinah! Dinah! Steady!” I don’t know when the last time I heard that scene in its entirety because I always start laughing so hard I can hardly pay attention. There’s just something about Mark-Paul Gosselaar yelling “Dinah!” while badly being lowered down that just gets me every single time.

Dead Man on Campus is also funny to see now, because Jason Segel is in it and he was 18, and looks 18. His on-screen girlfriend is Linda Cardellini, who later became is co-star on Freaks and Geeks. Alyson Hannigan is also in it, who would later play Segel’s wife in How I Met Your Mother. So that’s all pretty fun.

More people need to watch and appreciate Dead Man on Campus. In fact, EVERYONE needs to watch and appreciate Dead Man on Campus.

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