Sunday, 13 November 2011

Why you MUST see Tucker & Dale vs. Evil

Simply put, it's brilliant!

Taking the typical horror cliché of kids in the woods being hunted by crazed hillbillies, Tucker and Dale vs. Evil takes this genre template and subverts it. Instead of following the kids, we follow the hillbillies, and watch all the standard slasher film scenarios unfold before us, but discover that the creepy encounters, kidnappings and murders are all just untimely accidents.

It's not what it looks like...

Obviously, it's a comedy, and a buddy comedy at that, with Firefly alum Alan Tudyk and Reaper's Tyler Labine taking the respective title roles. Tudyk plays the relatively smarter of the two, who of course must suffer for his extra IQ points, with Labine playing such a sympathetic idiot role that all you want to do is hug him. 

The typical teenagers are filled out with the sexy smart girl, the jock, the black guy, the neurotic guy and the vapid airhead (watch her. Seriously, comedy gold). I'm not too familiar with most of the others, but Jesse Moss of must-see Ginger Snaps plays the neurotic guy with glee.

It's not what it looks like...

From the first encounters at the gas station where Dale is given bad advice for how to talk to women, to the guys getting their dream home (a run down cabin √° la Evil Dead), to the accidental kidnapping and hostage holding, Tucker & Dale just doesn't run out of steam. It has a great and simple concept, which is pretty much a film based around the red shirt of Star Trek, and plays out all the best scenarios you could hope for. A gag isn't missed, and if you take things from the kids point of view, you can still see it playing out as a typical slasher flick. 

It's not what it looks like...

The only drawback to the film is it's ending. The main climax is satisfying enough, though doesn't quite give the giggles of the rest of the film, but my main bone of contention is the end coda (is that the right terminology?). It's quite slow and borders on typical safe humour. But this is it. There is nothing else to detract from the film. It is almost a 100% in my book. It's easily the best horror send up since Scary Movie, perhaps far surpassing it. Don't go in expecting any scares because you won't find them. This is just a brilliant send up. To paraphrase a review I read, it will do for Hills Have Eyes rednecks what Shaun of the Dead did for zombies. 

It's not what it looks like...

I could write so much about this film, but I don't want to spoil it. Do yourself a favour and just see it!

I implore you, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil didn't get a theatrical release, even though it has almost universal positive reviews and is a festival favourite, but it IS out now on DVD, and by God, this is a film to buy and share with people! 

But a word of warning: DO NOT WATCH THE TRAILER. It gives away all the best gags and a substantial amount of the plot. Just take my word for it and give this 88 minute long film a try. You won't regret it!