By Brian Costello,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Stereotyping, iffy humor in dated, unfunny comedy.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
After over an hour of gay stereotypes, the movie shifts gears long enough to put in a message of how we are "all God's children" that feels forced and not very sincere.
Positive Role Models
Gay men in this movie are essentially prancing and lisping stereotypes of the worst kind. Almost all the women are treated as bikini-clad sex objects. One of the lead characters pretends to be gay on a gay cruise in order to win the heart of a woman on the cruise ship; the other lead character spends most of the movie calling gay men "homos" among other slurs and acting grossed out by the very idea of homosexual men.
Violence & Scariness
An enraged woman knocks a man in the head and sends him falling into a pool. Two rival bikini teams have a physical altercation, comedic and sexualized slapping.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Gratuitous nudity: women on a Swedish bikini team do topless jumping jacks. In a cruise ship dining room, ice sculptures of penises spurt water out their tips. Male nudity, exposed buttocks. A gag involving an erect penis in a swimsuit. Frequent, unrelenting sex talk, gags, and innuendo (phallic puns and double entendre especially). Jokes in which suntan lotion is confused for ejaculate. The "butch" coach of the Swedish bikini team tries to impress one of the lead characters by repeatedly shoving a baseball bat halfway down her throat. A woman, thinking the man she's talking to is gay, asks him the best way to perform oral sex; he asks her to show him what she does by using a banana, and she proceeds to graphically show and tell him.
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Frequent profanity. "F--k" and variations. Incessant sexual innuendo, puns, and double entendre employed at every possible opportunity. One of the lead characters uses gay slurs like "homo" and "trouser pilots." "C--ksucker," "p---y," "a--hole," "bitch," "s--t."
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Products & Purchases
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Excessive drinking. Lead characters drink to excess, pass out in pools, wake up in strange beds, slur their speech, stumble, etc. Pot smoking. Cigar smoking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Boat Trip is a 2002 comedy in which Cuba Gooding Jr. and Horatio Sanz play two randy straight guys who mistakenly end up on a "gays only" cruise ship. This movie manages to portray every possible gay stereotype -- lisping, prancing, obsessively focused on having sex with heterosexual men -- while also finding any possible phallic-related gag, innuendo, or double entendre to employ for the duration of the movie. After being little more than a punch line for over an hour, the movie tries to force in a "we are all God's children" message that in no way redeems everything that went on before that moment. Sanz's character in particular reacts to interactions with gay men by acting grossed out and using terms like "homo" and "trouser pilots," and the movie doesn't bother trying to distinguish whether the character's homophobia is the punch line, or if being grossed out by homosexuality and gay culture is the punch line. Nearly all the women here suffer the same fate of stereotyping: when a Swedish bikini team ends up on board, they seem to be there to make the movie "less gay" and act bubbly as they engage in topless jumping jacks while Sanz and Gooding Jr. objectify them. In addition, there's frequent profanity, sight gags involving suntan lotion mistaken for ejaculate, gags involving oral sex with a baseball bat and a banana, frequent drunken behavior, and a scene with pot smoking. Families hoping for a comedy centered on LGBTQ culture should look elsewhere.
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What's the Story?
In BOAT TRIP, six months have passed since Jerry (Cuba Gooding Jr.) was dumped by Felicia (Vivica A. Fox) after his marriage proposal went horribly wrong, and he's still heartbroken. His best friend, Nick (Horatio Sanz), after running into a mutual friend of theirs who is now involved with a curvaceous Hooters server he met on a cruise, decides that a cruise would be the best way for Nick to have sex and for Jerry to move on. But after an altercation with a man who turns out to be their travel agent, the guys are instead booked on a cruise that is entirely for gay men. Although they are initially horrified and disgusted by the spectacle of men flirting and holding hands with each other while either acting effeminate or speaking entirely in double entendre, their luck changes for the better when Nick's actions inadvertently bring a Swedish bikini team on board, and Jerry is saved from drunkenly drowning by Gabriella (Roselyn Sanchez), the ship's dance instructor. While Nick does his best to "act gay" to put suntan lotion on the Swedish bikini team, Jerry continues to lie to Gabriella to win her over with the intention of being honest when the time is right. As they start to become friends with some of the gay men on the ship, the two begin to lose their homophobia, and their facade begins to crumble when Felicia tracks Nick down and says she wants to marry him. Jerry, with the help of Nick as well as his new friends, must find a way to be truthful to Gabriella, and to be truthful to his heart with his marriage looming and Gabriella on the verge of sailing away forever.
Is It Any Good?
Older generations watching this movie might ask themselves if the ghost of Paul Lynde returned to write the innuendo-heavy one-liners that never stop in this dated and cringeworthy comedy. Younger generations watching it might view the premise of Boat Trip (two randy straight dudes forced to spend four days on a gay cruise) with the same flabbergasted shock that just about everybody now experiences when seeing 1950s movies in which the woman of the nuclear family goes out and gets herself a job.
It's a lazy comedy that goes for the easiest jokes, often homophobic or sexist, and also not funny. Gay men are either prancing, lisping, and effeminate, or else they're only capable of speaking in sexual innuendo. Most of the women in the movie exist to be bubbly, curvaceous, and fond of gratuitous jumping jacks while topless in a bikini. The Swedish bikini team seem forced into the story because someone (or the "target demographic") needed the movie to be "less gay." Their existence is as forced as the attempt to mine a message out of the movie by giving one of the gay men actual depth when he talks of the father who rejected him until Dad realized on his death bed that it's OK that his son is gay because "we are all God's children." This epiphany occurs after over 60 minutes of nonstop jokes in which the stereotypical behaviors of gay men and Sanz's character's overblown overreactions to these behaviors is the punch line. The only moments of actual humor come from Roger Moore, who does, admittedly, say one or two laugh-out-loud bits of dialogue. Overall though, an offensive, obnoxious movie.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about stereotyping in movies. How does Boat Trip use stereotyping to mine humor out of gay men? How are nearly all of the women in the movie stereotyped for the sake of comedy?
Some might argue that a comedy such as this one is meant to be "mindless" -- entertaining for entertainment's sake. What do you think? Is this what audiences want after an exhausting day at work, or does it insult the audience's intelligence?
This movie was released in 2002. How might a movie with a similar premise be different if it were released today?
- In theaters: July 17, 2002
- On DVD or streaming: September 30, 2003
- Cast: Cuba Gooding Jr., Horatio Sanz, Roselyn Sanchez
- Director: Mort Nathan
- Inclusion Information: Black actors, Latinx actors
- Studio: Lions Gate
- Genre: Comedy
- Run time: 94 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: Strong sexual content, language and some drug material.
- Last updated: August 31, 2022
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