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Snowboard Academy Reviews

Equipped with a cast that only a masochist would enjoy, this limp ski resort comedy stars the unholy trio of Corey Haim, Jim Varney, and Brigitte Nielsen. Full of generic slapstick and one-dimensional characters, the film promises little, and delivers even less. Ignoring the rule banning snowboarding at the Chantecler ski resort, the owner's rebellious son, Chris (Corey Haim), and his "punk friends" take to the slopes, annoying the slower patrons. Yet despite the reservations of his resentful older brother, Paul (Paul Hopkins), Chris convinces convinces his father, Mr. Barry (Joe Flaherty), to open the resort to snowboarders--but only on the condition that Chris will take charge of its instruction. In other news, the inept Rudy James (Jim Varney) is hired as the resort's entertainer-safety engineer, and brings chaos to everything he touches, while Mr. Barry's gold-digging Russian wife, Mimi (Brigitte Nielsen), cheats on him and plots revenge. A contest is declared: the skiers will face off against the snowboarders, to prove which sport is better. Unbeknownst to them, Paul has called in Olympic ringers for his team. Mimi and her lover also try to sabotage the contest, hoping that her husband will be forced to sell the resort and she'll get half the cash. Chris and Paul race each other in the final leg of the competition. Mimi's plan to detonate a bomb near the duo is thwarted by Rudy. Chris and Paul finally resolve their differences. Filmed in the Laurentian Mountains of Quebec, this instantly forgettable throwaway is barren of laughs and imagination, and boasts a plot line that would've been considered hackneyed back in the days of Frankie and Annette. Full of fun-loving kids bucking authority, the script is padded with repetitive snowboarding footage, and ultimately feels more like a 89-minute promo for the joys of "the fastest growing winter sport." Haim is getting a tad old for this type of role, Nielsen is only around to show off her abundant cleavage, and fans of Flaherty's work on "SCTV" will be disappointed by his latter-day choice of roles. Varney's bumbling is particularly grueling to watch--his character here make his trademark "Ernest" role look as sophisticated as Cary Grant. He sets himself on fire, is dragged by a snowmobile, and while the Rudy James character is supposed to be a terrible comedian, it must be asked: do his stand-up routines have to be so painfully accurate? One might think that such a good-spirited comedy simply has to have at least some good points; this one doesn't. It's an endurance test lying in wait for the unsuspecting video-renter or late-night cable viewer. (Violence, profanity.)