Reviews, articles, rants & ramblings on the darker side of the media fringe

REVIEW: Tucker & Dale Vs Evil

Tucker & Dale ****

Tucker (Alan Tudyk) & Dale (Tyler Labine), two easy going West Virginian hillbillies head out to their new vacation cabin in the woods where they plan to drink beer, fish and fix-up the run down cabin.

They run into a group of college students who are out for a camping weekend, to drink some beer, smoke weed and skinny dip. After an awkward meeting at a gas station both groups jump to the wrong conclusions and assume the worst stereotypes of each other.

That night Tucker and Dale go fishing as the college kids get high and go for a swim, Ali (Katrina Bowden) mistakenly thinks she’s being watched by the hillbillies and falls into the lake. Dale rescues her from drowning and the college kids assume that Ali has been kidnapped. Misunderstandings and gory slapstick ensues…

Tucker and Dale vs. Evil is the latest and fortunately, one of the better, entries into that dubious sub-genre, the comedy-horror. Taking a different stance than the self-aware, pop-culture referencing movies of the last few years, this is basically a slapstick farce, comedy of errors style movie. Reversing the genre stereotypes of redneck, serial killer hillbillies is a new twist and the characters of Tucker and Dale are sweet, lovable guys with real heart. Conversely the check-list college kid stereotypes remain relatively unchanged for this type of movie and it is easy to guess who will be killed in order. The killings are handled well, clearly set-up and more fun because of it, and the wood chopper scene is a real standout.

The cast are solid, Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine are the standouts, Katrina Bowden is good and Jesse Moss nails it as the psychotic Chad.

Director Eli Craig has crafted a fun movie, one that deserved a much wider cinematic release than some of the crap that clogs up the multiplex screens. A good blend of comedic gore, it’s never horrific or in the least bit scary, but the humour should satisfy most fans of the genre who will appreciate the nods to genre conventions.

Don’t watch the trailer before seeing the movie, it shows almost every kill and most of the obvious gags. Great fun and although much better than a host of recent comedy horror attempts, it’s not quite as good as ‘Shaun of the Dead’, ‘Evil Dead’ or ‘Zombieland’ no matter how many platitudes it gets on IMDB.   

Quality: 4 out of 5 stars

Any good: 4 out of 5 stars