A gym owner attempting to take over the business of a struggling local rival is thwarted by an attorney who develops a soft spot for the underdog. Teams from both parties wind up vying for a cash prize in a national Dodgeball competition.

I just couldn\'t wipe the big, dumb grin off my face during this big, dumb movie.

The ?underdog? movie is a bit tired but it has been given a good old kick in the pants by Ben Stiller and his comedy-lovin? pals in Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story. Swingers? Vince Vaughn plays the laidback good guy-cum-antihero Peter La Fleur. His ramshackle gymnasium Average Joe?s is sliding into bankruptcy and the uber-gym Globo next door is closing in. It is run by White Goodman, Stiller?s latest repulsive comedy creation, a character so dumb and dated he could quite easily run for US president. A takeover of Average Joe?s by Goodman is imminent according to Kate Veatch (Zoolander?s Christine Taylor), the lawyer appointed by La Fleur?s bank to close him down. Ultimately she becomes sympathetic to his cause and predictably a love interest. A bright idea by La Fleur?s loyal clientele might just save the day however. They enter the local dodgeball competition to win the money needed to stall foreclosure. Enter a bunch of hopeful misfits which includes actors Justin Long (Galaxy Quest), Stephen Root (Office Space) and I, Robot?s Alan Tudyk, as ?Steve The Pirate? (?Ah-haar!?does make it into the dialogue on more than one occasion). Together they make up the underdog team who take on Goodman?s pumped up ?masters of the universe? at the state dodgeball finals played in, where else, but Vegas. Rip Torn as the cantankerous, wheel-chair bound, un-PC coach Patches O?Houlihan is just icing on the cake.Written and directed by first-timer Rawson Marshall Thurber, Dodgeball is very formulaic in its story and characters but it manages to rise above average. The Best In Show-esque sports commentary by actors Gary Cole (Office Space) and Jason Bateman (Starsky & Hutch) has much to do with it, as does the casting. Thurber cites Star Trek send up Galaxy Quest as one of his favourite comedies and while Dodgeball shares two cast members in common, it also mines the good-natured humour that made it such a fun stand-out. Dodgeball also goes to town on the extremes and vanity of the ?Me Generation? fitness industry. Fans of Stiller?s ever-growing comedy pantheon should add it to his list as one of the better entries. It is a hoot and not that dissimilar in tone to his former hit Zoolander (2001).As a result, I just couldn?t wipe the big, dumb grin off my face during this big, dumb movie. And warning, don?t miss the end credits ? they?re pure low-brow gold?