It's a fun film - great 80's music (surprised to hear a little "Jet Fighter" from The Three O'Clock - played at my high school...). Yes, it's well-worn territory, but Barry, the friend, is hilarious and makes it for me. Grace seems to play the same role in every film, but he works in this one. The biggest surprise for me is Anna Farris. It's refreshing to see her in the smart girl role. Her relationship with her brother (Grace) is surprisingly nuanced for an 80's flick. Angie Everhart is another pleasant surprise. So yeah, it's between a 5 and 6 for me, but I'd be loathe to recommend it to the masses.
Principal photography was completed 2007, but Universal Studios shelved the film until its 2011 theatrical release. Topher Grace posted that the release of the film was delayed when the studio didn't know how to handle and promote a youth comedy film with portrayal of cocaine use, as the drug was prominent in the 1980s.
Its release remained delayed until Relativity Media subsidiary Rogue acquired the film from Universal Pictures for $10 million. The film was previously titled Young Americans and Kids in America, both titles of popular 1980s songs by David Bowie and Kim Wilde.
On March 3, 2011, while being interviewed on Ryan Seacrest's KISS FM radio show, Topher Grace announced to former American Idol contestant Chris Medina that 1% of the film's box office revenue would be donated to the care of his injured fiance, Juliana Ramos. Juliana was involved in a serious car accident in 2009 and suffered a traumatic brain injury. Her story has been widely followed across the nation since Medina's appearance on American Idol.