Up the Creek (1984) Poster


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Seek this out
deheor5 December 2005
Sometimes the planets align and everything just comes together. Some likable but underused actors join up with a veteran (and really really old) director to film a script written by the author of some minor league films. This is the sort of recipe that more often than not ends up with a mediocre movie that is instantly forgettable but for whatever reasons They ended up producing one of the funniest teen comedies ever made.

A group of loser college students played by an all star collection of teen sex comedy stars including Tim Matheson and Stephen Furst from Animal House, Dan Monahan from Porky's and Sandy Helberg from History of the World Part 1 who,having their arms twisted by a corrupt Dean played by John Hillerman, agree to enter a dangerous raft race with the promise that victory will bring them un-earned degrees.

Excessive drinking, fart jokes and gratuitous nudity are just some of the pleasures that this movie provides for the viewer. It also features the smartest dog in the world (he does charades), a kick ass song by Cheap Trick and the gorgeous Jennifer Runyon (ghostbusters & Charles in charge, I don't know which credit is more impressive) along with some great race footage and hilarious dialog. This movie is simply much better than it has the right to be.

All the people who complain that it is stupid miss the point. Of course it is stupid. Its moronic. Its dumb as dirt. It is also hysterically funny from start to finish. This movie reminds me in many ways of Weekend at Bernies another incredibly goofy movie that if approached in the wrong mood is virtually unwatchable. To avoid injury try not to think. Just sit back and let this movie wash over you.
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Excellent campy '80s movie
ddpro30 July 2007
This movie is silly and campy and total '80s, but it's very entertaining and the soundtrack is completely amazing, featuring artists like Cheap Trick, Beach Boys and Ian Hunter among others. Like most campy '80s movies, this plot is predictable and the outcome is typical, but it's fun to watch the adventures of Bob McGraw and the gang. Tim Matheson plays a similar role to his Eric Straton character from Animal House. Ironically (and completely on purpose) the movie Van Wilder, featuring Ryan Reynolds, casts Tim Matheson as Van's uptight father. The irony is that Van Wilder is very similar to Bob McGraw from 20 years earlier. In Van Wilder, however, Matheson plays the exact opposite character.
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Up the Creek
Coxer9931 May 1999
Sophomoric humor taken to the limit by Animal House alums Matheson and Furst as college misfits on a white water rafting race in the hope of bringing glory to their mediocre university. Slapstick gags, goofy all around...but good fun.
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Great Movie! At least a 9
gordonporch30 January 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Up the Creek is right up there with my most liked movies. I'm crying for a DVD. What kind of sense of humor doesn't think "Take no prisoners" wasn't funny when the gals are "going after It." The bazooka shooting at the noisy crow was funny. There is funny rolling over funny in this movie but maybe some of it is too sophisticated. Tim gets invited to Jenifer's room and after hellos she, lying on the bed in a loose robe says, "Why don't you slip into something more comfortable?" Tim retorts, "I didn't brig anything more comfortable." She says pouting, "Well, how about me?" That is not only funny it might also be the hottest line I have ever seen in a movie. Sparks are popping all over the place like the gal cheerleader producing interest in the bored stands. I don't take this movie seriously except in the sense it is seriously entertaining.
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Get "Up" and laugh....
Mister-64 October 1999
How can a movie like this miss?

It has two veterans from "Animal House" (Matheson and Furst), Pee-Wee from "Porky's" (Monahan), the cop from "Hill Street Blues" (Sikking), a Playmate (Thomasino), a Mel Brooks regular (Helberg), and laughs aplenty. Oh, and did I mention the rapids?

"Up the Creek" just goes to show that the right elements in any movie, when they click, make the experience all the more pleasant. For instance, if you want to make a movie about a bunch of losers that compete for their college in a water rapids race against college twerps that are richer, meaner and, in one case, more militaristic, it helps if you have a cast like mentioned above.

It also helps if there's a dog on hand like Chuck the Dog. He's smart, he's helpful, he knows how to attack where it hurts the most and he plays a mean game of charades. If all dogs were this smart, humans would be in a lot of trouble.

And those rafting scenes: top notch. Not a lot of detail goes into most movies like this. But when they go to that extra trouble, it works. These guys actually did brave the rapids for this flick, the nuts.

This would make a solid rent alongside "Animal House", that is how good "Up the Creek" truly is. Besides, how many slob comedies do you know that try to visually quote the final scene in "Bridge on the River Kwai"?

Seven stars and a twenty-one canoe salute for "Up the Creek"; it serves up the comedy.
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A rip snorting good "RoadRunner" style movie
rlcsljo18 February 2000
This movie was mostly shot in the "RoadRunner" cartoon style with the students from the Military Institute playing the part of "Wile E. Coyote". Most of the time when they tried to impede our (intrepid?) naive heroes, their traps back fire.

The counterparts of the military guys are the "preppy" guys whose gags always hit their marks(our heroes), but despite being bombed, kidnapped and beaten (literally) they dont seem to slow down our heroes.

The final revelation of our heroes that maybe others in the race are just as determined to win, or prevent them from winning, gives hilarious results from beginning to end.

Oh yeah, this is a great movie to "drink along with", while you laugh out loud.
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Awesome movie
jackson_km1323 September 2003
This has to be one of the best movies that alot of people havent heard of. I love the 80s movies by far the best movies came out in the 80s and this is one of them. This movie is full of laughs,hot women and college kids doing what they do best drinking and having a good time.I seriously recomend if havent seen this movie u run out and rent it.Cant wait till it comes out on dvd.
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Ahhh...College...Sex, Alcohol, and White water River rafting?!?
Ironman-710 March 1999
I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Yes, it's campy. Yes, it's full of sexual references, and other such content. That's what makes this movie great. The movie is Juvenile, and downright 'bad' at times...but that's what makes this movie THE best movie to show at College campus movie nights, which is where I saw it the first time. Then I went out and bought my own copy. I LOVE IT!!!!!!
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...without a paddle
FunnyMann25 October 2001
Is this flick good? Jesus, no. Is this flick funny? Somehow, yes.

"Up the Creek" has not aged well (what a shocker), but it's a perfect example of the pointless, disposable comedies they made in the early- to mid-80s. You know, the kind of film that aspired to reach the heights of, say, "Porky's."

Actually, "Up The Creek" has a pretty solid comic pedigree, at least as solid as you can get in a film like this. Two "Animal House" vets, a "Porky's" refugee, and -- I can't believe I know this -- the chick from "Charles in Charge."

Every scene, every joke, every character here is dumb. And thank God. Another review mentioned that this is a good drinking film. Actually, I think "Up The Creek" was made specifically FOR drunk people. (And possibly by drunk people.) But that's OK. It's all good. I mean, the film's not good, but then again, it is. Ah, forget it. Just grab a case, a beer bong, and watch the damn thing.
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One of my all-time favorite underrated comedies
witster181 December 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Tim Matheson is in rare form here. His cocky, brash, and free-spirited attitude keeps a smile on your face the whole time he's on screen.

One of my favorite parts is when Tim is jumped in the parking lot outside of the bar. He's knocked out when his friends find him. They try to get him to come to, but then he starts swinging punches and knocks the crap out of one of his friends. When he gets his wits about him he says,"they got you to"? :) Hard to pick one moment because this film delivers laughs for 90 straight minutes. It's well-written, and well-acted for the genre.

The soundtrack is great; out-dated but fantastic. This movie doesn't shy away from what it is... an 80's 'B' 'Boob-comedy' as I like to call them. This is one of the best - maybe THE best. Maybe not as nostalgic as Porky's or Animal House, but it's still at that level on the comedy meter.

Never a dull moment. The fun runs like the river, and you'll be hooked from the opening sequence. A true cult-classic that deserves another viewing if it's been a while, and if you're a comedy fan whose put off finding this little gem - shame on you.

HIGHLY recommended goof-ball comedy. 84/100

One of the most sought-after out-of-print VHS to never get a DVD release. These VHS tapes(in good shape) can go for $25-$50.
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Otter and Flounder's River Adventure
Warning: Spoilers
A year following this frolicking party film, Tim Matheson would ask Chevy Chase to kill him in FLETCH. Chase was supposed to play the role of OTTER in ANIMAL HOUSE (before John Landis objected, not wanting his film to be a SNL skit), a role that made Matheson, a former child actor who was growing into various filler roles (like MAGNUM FORCE), famous. In FLETCH, Matheson is in his forties, a dapper businessman. Here he's a college student, and actually looks much younger than in FLETCH but way too old to be a student. He's one of four slackers stuck in a purgatory college sent on a river rafting race, a win garnering them not only free degrees but a chance to defeat the bad guys: a quartet of perfect looking blonde dudes.

Here we have a wacky adventure that spends the first half partying on land and the second half partying downstream. It's splendidly vapid entertainment from start to finish, providing terrific action shots along the roaring rapids. Stephen Furst, another ANIMAL HOUSE alumni, flounders as a fat guy who likes to eat. Dan Monahan ("Pee Wee" of PORKY'S fame) is included but adds little more than a smiling face to the mindless goings-ons throughout. And Jennifer Runyan is fitfully pouty and pretty as Matheson's conquest.
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Fun, fun, sexy, and also, did I mention fun?
fatboy-102 June 1999
Up the creek is just plain hilarious. The white water rafting is quite real and quite accurate. Note the life vests they all wore? They did for a good reason.

Sight gags abound. Every time they open the doors of their truck, a million beer cans fall out. The college our heroes represent is LePetomaine University. (For the non French speaking....LePetomaine translates to "The Farter". Mel Brook used this name in Blazing Saddles....The Governor's name, which he played, but that's another story about another fun and silly movie)

Sure, there is sex, but it's comedy sex, not brutal, not excessive, it just fits nicely into a film about the four absolute worst college students in the country promised degrees if they would win the race for dear old P.U......The college where the only act of distinction from any graduate was a pardon.

If you enjoy comedy, you will love this show. I've seen it over a dozen times. You know, I think I'll watch it tonight...haven't seen it in a while. It'll help me relax with laughter, pretty girls, and an improbable plot line.

By the way? Did you ever see anyone blow up a river? Watch "Up the Creek" and find out how.
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great fun
bootling11 June 2002
This is college fun at it's best. Great bunch of guys and girls in a raft race. Full of drinking, sex and competitive humor. Love it. Classic. Tim M. and the fat guy from Animal House and Pee Wee from Porky's are in it. If you love 80's cheese, you will love this movie. It is entertaining all the way through and very hilarious!!
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Best weekend movie you could watch
teddy mills25 February 2005
Save this one for a Saturday or Sunday, you have snacks and beverages and friends nearby.

One of the best 80s colleges/sport movies. You wont learn a lot, but you 'll have a lot of fun.

If you lived in the 80's this movie will take you back to that era. When the cold beer flowed freely, and pretty girls were all around. Sunshine, water, laughing, and all the college years.

Tim Matheson would make an excellent James Bond. He has all the charisma that the Bond role requires.

Go Lepetomane!
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Wonderful White Water W-Fun
MAJORIC18 November 2005
Salacious white water raft race. Actually, it's a watered-down toga party. (Pun intended) Tim Matherson's presence is highly suspect. Good Fun for the time being. Highlights: the charade sequence near the film's silly denouement. You gonna love the frisky dog. Most imaginative use of explosives in a sophomore movie and most unbelievable bad guy's foul up I have ever seen. Otherwise, keep your brain in a jar and enjoy it. Is anybody ready to start a signature campaign to get this nice doggy err... movie onto DVD? Count me in. Hope MGM ever makes up its mind onto this. Time is running out. Cybercaf'e clock running. gggg
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"Your dog's a whore." "I trained him well."
Scott LeBrun6 September 2015
"Up the Creek" is a glorious entry in that genre known as the 1980s sex comedy. It's actually pretty funny at times, thanks to good gags in the script by Jim Kouf ("Stakeout"). It's got gorgeous gals (and bare breasts), likable heroes, priceless villains, and some very nice wilderness scenery. You really can't ask for anything more.

Some aging graduates of "Porky's" and "Animal House" play our leads, a bunch of indolent guys goofing their way through their protracted life at college. It turns out, they're the worst college students in the entire U.S. of A.! Their angry Dean (John Hillerman in a quick cameo) says that he will give them degrees PROVIDED that they win an all-important inter collegiate raft race that the Dean hopes will earn some respect for his place of higher learning.

Led by amiable lady's man Bob McGraw (Tim "Otter" Matheson), our heroes do battle with some cheating, conniving preppies (among them Jeff East of "Superman: The Movie") and some military school cadets commandeered by a vengeance minded nut (Blaine Novak) angry over being disqualified from the race.

Also along for the ride are Dan "Pee Wee" Monahan, Stephen "Flounder" Furst, lovely Jennifer Runyon ("Ghost Busters"), James Sikking ('Hill Street Blues'), Julia Montgomery ("Revenge of the Nerds"), and Jeana Keough ("The Beach Girls"). However, it's Jake the dog who easily steals the movie, especially in a delicious scene of charades. (You can tell that the dog is actually voiced by a human actor, in this case Frank Welker.) The movie opens brightly, as someone tries in vain to silence a chattery bird, and delivers enough titillation and, ultimately, outright destruction, to rate as a good time. It's hard to go wrong when the rocking title theme song is belted out by Cheap Trick. Everything is (mostly) comfortably predictable, and easy to take.

Eight out of 10.
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Forgotten Gem
kooper715 August 2014
What can I say?

Good music. Cheesy acting. Silly script.

This has to be one of the best Animal House Rip-Offs...and I don't mean that as an insult.

Even by today's standards the movie has pretty good pacing and an awesome soundtrack. The movie has enough gags and comedy that will definitely not disappoint anyone who is a 80's movie junkie.

As like other reviewers, I am just amazed more people don;t know about this film. Check out the YouTube video of Up the Creek by Cheap Trick to whet your appetite.

What a great flick!
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A group of college slackers are offered degrees by the dean if they win a race.
ltlacey15 October 2008
Warning: Spoilers
First off, one must put aside the characters played by Matheson and Furst. Matheson reprises his role from Animal House as the "ladies man" who somehow always gets the girl, and always does so with a swagger, smoking, and drink in hand. He also gets beat up by the "preppy squad." It worked much better in Animal House, but he manages to pull it off for most of this movie. Furst, on the other hand, I have no idea what he's supposed to be as Gonzer. Copying Belushi's Bluto from Animal House? That's what comes to mind at first, and a few times throughout the movie, and truthfully, he just does not pull it off. No one can do it the same way, and each time I have seen it tried in various movies it has failed. So Gonzer is just some college guy coasting through life, though this time it's with food and his best friend (in this movie), Irwin. I got a sense from a scene from the movie It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World where we have the scene where Gonzer sniffs out his kidnapped friend and chants, Irwin, Irwin.... This movie is your basic college romp with the usual elements. Getting drunk; cheating, no matter what, in order to win; girls taking off their tops; and the usual round of bad guys, who as always never win, since we all want to see the underdog win. Speaking of dogs, if it were not for Chuck, and his voice (done perfectly by the very talented Frank Welker), I would have rated this movie a lot lower. Every scene with Chuck is absolutely hilarious. But overall, the movie was too formulaic, but that's okay, since sometimes movie-goers just want to watch something that does not require too many brain cells. Though this movie might end up killing some... Since there is so much going on, and 2 sets of perfectly good "bad guys" (the military group is a hoot to watch, especially the 4 cadets), and we have some good footage of actual white-water rafting, this movie turns out to be not that bad. Silly, yes. Entertaining, yes. Something to discuss afterward, no.
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Comedy adventure with good all round stunts involve
wolfman-3931 March 2005
This is a story about students who were bottom of the league on every event that the college took part in.

It shows of the challenge four students who were under achievers within the college, being put into a raft race to try and break the trend set by previous years. It also shows the lengths each of the other colleges would go to to win the raft race, with rockets and bombs and the course of the river being altered.

It is a comedy you would like to watch again and again. The characters are portrayed well by the actors, and the story involved can show some of the everyday events that can happen in any rivalry situation.
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Funny, not great, but funny.
mysterlynch12 July 2003
As far as low budget, cheesy movies go, Up The Creek is decent. I will not attempt to suggest that it is a great movie, but it has it's moments.Tim Matheson is entertaining, though he is playing a character not too far removed from Otter of Animal House. A good flick for a lazy, brainless afternoon.
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My favorite 80s Comedy
jeffwalsh-1199130 October 2017
So many funny one liners and great characters. A blended cast of some side characters from Porky's and Animal House... I still love this movie more than any of them. Lots of funny moments and really good dialog amid the humor. Sure it is cheesy too... but that is the nature of an 80s comedy. This is one one of the few 80s comedies I never tire of and like to watch once a year or so. Some adult moments and mild nudity in spots, but otherwise really based more on funny situations than leaning on those aspects which were clearly in at the time. Great casting too, everyone fits their parts well.
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A case study in Slobs vs. Snobs comedy
a_chinn7 October 2017
I'll say up front that this film is really more of a 2 1/2 -star comedy, but it gets an extra half star for pure 1980s nostalgia. In a classic Slobs vs. Snobs comedy set up, with perennial college students Tim Matheson and Stephen Furst and a couple other buddies facing off against other snooty teams (ugh, preppies!) in an intercollegiate rafting race, while also wooing pretty all girl teams, but mostly Jennifer Runyon. Overall, there are a lot better of slobs vs snobs films (i.e. "Animal House," "Revenge of the Nerds," "Caddyshack," or even "DC Cab"), but "Up the Creek" isn't all that bad.
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"Was it as good for you as it was for me?"
merklekranz25 April 2017
Tim Matheson easily carries this "Animal House" follow up comedy. You get a nice dose of his sarcasm, a white water rafting competition, a dog that plays charades, a tad of nudity, good looking outdoor photography, and several inspired hilarious moments. Comparing "Up the Creek" to some other teen romps, I would have to say that it holds up quite well. "American Pie" I rate 6.5, " Animal House" 8.0, and "Up the Creek" 6.0. I'd rank it slightly better than something like "Malibu Bikini Shop" 5.5. The film is fast moving, and rarely a moment goes by without something outrageous happening. It also seems to have aged quite well, since most of the movie takes place in the woods and on the creek. I was surprised how much I liked it. - MERK
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"Of course I'd lie to you, I'm a guy..."
Predrag14 December 2016
This film is one of those 80's comedies that were very popular and paved the way for later college/fraternity films. Tim Matheson stars as Bob, who leads a ragtag group of guys who overcome great obstacles to win the race at the end. The script is tacky and often so bad in its attempt to be funny i.e. the dog that uses body language to communicate with the guys that one of their friends is being held captive by the enemy without any clothes, even using liver as Japanese for river, the silly and slapstick comedy among the army guys that are conveniently close enough to the river to blow things up, "The Revenge Of The Nerds" style rivalry between jocks and suite and tie yuppies with the casual, average guys and Tim Matheson and the leading girl who plays his love interest repeating the same lines each time they have sex: was it good for you as it was for me? The cinematography is not spectacular, the acting is not superior, it just makes you feel good I don't think movies are not supposed to be mind engaging, just a break from reality. This just has a good feeling for every underdog that was trying to do the right thing and never got the recognition they deserved. I think there is a lot of clever/sarcastic wit and dialog like that throughout the movie... perhaps why not everyone got it... it was a lot more than T & A and relied more on comic timing than nudity. This film is filled with hilarious dialogue, great raft scenes and lots of funny moments. Chuck the dog is amazing!

Overall rating: 7 out of 10.
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Pretty funny, not enough nudity
jadavix14 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
When grouping movies like this together, a catch all like "'80s teen sex comedies" or "boob comedies" or "t'na flicks" is usually used. More often than not, they're labelled as comedies, which really seems to be more out of force of habit, or courtesy on behalf of the viewer, than anything else. I don't know how many times I've watched one of these movies, eg. Joysticks, Hot Moves, Getting It On, and have found myself hard pressed to identify a single moment that could be said to approach anything like humour. We assume they're comedies, I guess, because they're too dumb to be anything else, or, what is more likely, they're carbon copies of other movies - Animal House, Porky's, Police Academy - that actually were, indisputably, supposed to be funny, whether they were or not.

Up the Creek is an exception to this rule. It actually has jokes, and I even laughed a few times! That is so rare I can't even tell you. It has the problem a lot of these boob comedies/t'na flicks have, which is that the premise of the movie doesn't actually leave much room for sex or nudity. That's the main reason we watch them, right? In this one the typical miss-matched group of losers is pitted against the also typical blonde upperclassmen (why must they always be blonde?) for a race down a river. There's the main guy, who smokes thin cigars for no discernible reason, and in some shots looks almost exactly like Paul Rudd. There's also (of course) the nerd, and the main guy from Porky's, who I always despised, but he doesn't do much here to make you hate him one way or the other. I would have preferred if they didn't rely on (yet another) stock character to round out the bunch: the fat guy who can't stop eating. At least he isn't repulsive like the one in Joysticks, but come on. Was this ever funny to anyone?

The upperclassmen - all four of them blonde - try to cheat using high tech (for the time) gadgets like exploding darts and remote controlled airplanes that shoot torpedoes. They have the blessing of an older, rich man who (of course) wears his jumper (sorry, "sweater") tied around his neck.

There is also another group of kooky competitors who are in the movie for comic relief: army men with an over eager commanding officer who also like to blow stuff up. They aren't really differentiated from the rich guys in so doing.

In the end, what you have is a comedy which isn't funny enough to be watched on that merit alone, and doesn't have enough boobs to be worthwhile for anyone else, but at least I laughed a few times, rather than retching horribly as I did with Joysticks.
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