Alan Tudyk Weekend – Tucker & Dale vs Evil (2010) Revisited

Director: Eli Craig

Writer: Eli Craig, Morgan Jurgenson (Screenplay)

Starring: Tyler Labine, Alan Tudyk, Katrina Bowden, Jesse Moss, Philip Granger, Brandon Jay McLaren

 

Plot: Affable hillbillies Tucker and Dale are on vacation at their dilapidated mountain cabin when they are mistaken for murderers by a group of preppy college students.


Tagline – The perfect love story… with a high body count.

Runtime: 1 Hour 29 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Bloody Hilarious

 

Story: Tucker and Dale vs Evil starts when Tucker (Tudyk) and Dale (Labine) head into the woods to their holiday home by the lake, the same weekend Chad (Moss) leads his college house out to the woods for their own weekend of drinks and drugs.

When one of the students Allison (Bowden) gets injured, Tucker & Dale take her to rescue, this is where the miscommunication starts when Chad makes the rest believe Tucker & Dale are hillbilly killers and a series of failed rescue attempts get to see the body count only complicated for the rest.

 

Thoughts on Tucker and Dale vs Evil

 

Characters – Tucker is the smarter of the two friends, he looks over Dale when he is struggling with life decisions and talks the two out of trouble. Dale is the simply minded of the two, he does have the ability to remember an information he is told, he gets a crush on Allison and we follow how he tries to gain the confidence to speak to her, while trying to defend himself from the college students. Allison is the beautiful college student that doesn’t completely fit in with the rest of the group, she gets injured and rescued by the friends. She learns to accept people that look different which causes most of the confusing in this film. Chad is the leader of the college group, he has a tragic backstory which motivates him into his actions through the film.

PerformancesTyler Labine & Alan Tudyk show wonderful chemistry through this film as they show they have comic timing that fits the characters. Katrina Bowden fits the beautiful young woman roe well, the looks are important to make this character standout. Jesse Moss plays his character well become more psychotic as the film unfolds.

StoryThe story follows a pair of hillbillies that run into a group of college kids in the woods, we get to play into the ideas that are the typical traits within the horror, as the hillbillies are calm instead of bloody hungry killers and the students have played into the fears people can have for who people are. This is how the genre can turn the ideas on its head which plays into the comedy needed for the film and the story gets a chance to just play along with everything that is going on. We do go down the typical slasher genre, because we get the large group picked off, while most look like suicide it does falls into the ideas the slasher genre has.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy gets to turn the typical horror traits on its head, which is it what makes this film feel refreshing to watch and if you are a horror fans you will get most of the jokes being used.

SettingsThe film keeps nearly all the action in and around the wood area, with have no easy escape after the car leaves early on and the signal is gone, meaning the college students must think for themselves.

Special EffectsThe effects are very impressive when it comes to the deaths, we get original ones that manage to by funny as well as brutal.


Scene of the Movie –
The woodchipper.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The students are portrayed to be complete idiots.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily one of the best horror comedies out there, it will get laughs from the audience with the horror audience understanding nearly every joke being played out in the film.

 

Overall: Funny, entertaining, a must watch.

Rating

 

 

Escape Room (2019)

Director: Adam Robitel

Writer: Bragi F Schut, Maria Melnik (Screenplay)

Starring: Taylor Russell, Logan Miller, Jay Ellis, Tyler Labine, Deborah Ann Woll, Nik Dodani

 

Plot: Six strangers find themselves in a maze of deadly mystery rooms, and must use their wits to survive.


Tagline – Solve the Puzzle. Escape the Room. Find the clues or die.

Runtime: 1 Hour 39 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: The Best Escape Room Movie

 

Story: Escape Room starts as we meet our six random strangers Zoey (Russell), Ben (Miller), Jason (Ellis), Mike (Labine), Amanda (Harper) and Danny (Dodani) who have been involved in a traumatic experience accept an offer for a $10,000 prize for an Escape Room.

Once inside the Escape Room, they find themselves fighting for their lives once it turns out the game isn’t a game, it is a race to survive, leading to the strangers needing to put a side their difference to escape.

 

Thoughts on Escape Room

 

Characters – Zoey is a student study quantum physics while being hiding from the world because of a traumatic experience, she keeps to herself and is dared to take a risk over the holiday. She is the smartest, even though she is the quietest. Ben is a slacker living with his own guilty for an accident, he wants to put his life back together with this game being a good start for him. Jason is a successful stock broker that has always seen himself as a winner, he takes the leader position when trying to solve the problems. Mike, Amanda and Danny complete the line-up, each has their own reason being in the game with their own trauma from their past. Danny gets to explain to the team and audience about escape rooms.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances, it is clear that we have the tension from strangers working together, we see the difference and they all make themselves get their moment in the limelight. It could be fair to say that we don’t always need much in a horror, but these six get to show their grief too.

StoryThe story follows 6 stranger who have been selected for an escape room, only for it to turn into a battle for survival over any game. Now we have had at least two escape room movies in the past, this thankful is the best when it comes to the story even if the rooms are wildly imaginative. The story does make it clear that each of the six has some moment of trauma in their past, which makes is clear that is why they have been selected too. My biggest issues with the story telling process, is the opening scene, which takes away any peril we feel for that character, we could have used the Danny character for the idea of escape room here. The second is that we only see the lives of three of the six which from the way I would read it, would be they are going to be the easy picks for the final three in the movie. We can say this movie does use elements from other films including ‘Cube’ only it does enough to make it, its own, the rest of the positive lead us into spoiler land so we will leave them for another day.

Mystery/Sci-FiThe is what escape rooms are all about, the mystery of how to get out of each room, this is like many of them, which is good to see as it keeps us wondering what will happen next, the sci-fi elements play more into the bigger picture of the events going on.

SettingsEach room created has something unique about it, it will make it clear how far along we are with items being placed to remind our characters of what is happened in their past that could hold them up.

Special EffectsWhen it comes to the effects, we once again have high quality going on here, the ‘hatch’ room will become the biggest divide with the audience for what it achieves.


Scene of the Movie –
The ‘hatch’ room.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The opening scene.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily the best escape room movie we have had to date, it will keep you guessing, characters that make sense and is ready for bigger ideas too.

 

Overall: Enjoyable mystery thriller.

Rating

 

 

Little Evil (2017)

Director: Eli Craig

Writer: Eli Craig (Screenplay)

Starring: Evangeline Lilly, Adam Scott, Clancy Brown, Bridget Everett, Tyler Labine, Donald Faison, Owen Atlas

 

Plot: Gary who has just married Samantha the woman of his dreams, discovers that her six-year-old son may be the Antichrist.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable Horror Comedy

 

Story: Little Evil starts with Gary (Scott) moving in with his new wife Samantha (Lilly) and her son Lucas (Atlas), Gary sees this new relationship with Lucas as a chance to make up for the lack of a father he has in his childhood. The problem comes with the fact Lucas doesn’t communicate with Gary and he has an awkward evil presence about him.

As the evil enters continue to grow around Lucas, Gary starts looking into the past relationships Samantha where the men have all met with unusual fates, Gary must now find a way to prove whether Lucas is the antichrist or not.

 

Thoughts on Little Evil

 

Characters – Gary is a real estate agent that gets married to a girl of his dreams Samantha, but he barely got a chance to know her son first. He finds it difficult to connect with Lucas and starts to believe he is the antichrist. He mostly sums up what it would be like being a new parent to a step child but to the extremes. Samantha is the woman Gary marries, the mother of Lucas, she just wants to have the two get along, but we don’t learn too much more about her. Lucas is the stepson in question, he is distant like you could imagine and doesn’t like Gary entering his life.

PerformanceAdam Scott is a comedian that can always be the best supporting character in a movie, but I have found he can struggle in leading role but here, he was the best thing in the film. Evangeline Lilly is good but doesn’t have much to do in the film, with Owen Atlas giving us a good performance from a child actor. We do have a mix in supporting performances where I did like Tyler Labine performance but I felt Bridget Everett tried too hard for an extra joke.

StoryThe story adds extra horror to the idea of becoming a step parent, we get to see how it starts with an extreme problem with each other and need to learn to accept each other. We do get plenty of moments which can poke fun at the horror genre following a play book but in the state the obvious feel to everything. the story is easy to follow and fun along the way.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy is mostly about the idea of being a step parent and it all dives into the horror side of the it being what could have happened if it could be the worst.

SettingsThe small town shows us how the people will come together as step parents work together to improve and give knowledge on being the step parent.

Special EffectsThe effects are only used when needed and all work for the film even if the biggest moment could come off cheesy.

Scene of the Movie – Waterpark.

That Moment That Annoyed Me I feel the opening sequence gives too much away.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun horror comedy that gets the laughs out of the horror we would have seen in other films.

 

Overall: Fun enjoyable horror comedy.

Rating

 

 

The Boss (2016)

Director: Ben Falcone

Writer: Melissa McCarthy, Ben Falcone, Steve Mallory (Screenplay)

Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Bell, Peter Dinklage, Ella Anderson, Tyler Labine, Kathy Bates

 

Plot: A titan of industry is sent to prison after she’s caught insider trading. When she emerges ready to rebrand herself as America’s latest sweetheart, not everyone she screwed over is so quick to forgive and forget.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Mixed up Comedy

 

Story: The Boss starts as we see how Michelle Darnell (McCarthy) who has become one of the most powerful businesswoman who is self-centred and builds by stepping over the people including her business rival Renault (Dinklage). Michelle’s power is shattered when she is arrested for insider trading and spending 5 months in a luxury jail.

Once released from prison Michelle learns all her assets have been seized and the only person from her old life that will give her any time is her former assistant Claire (Bell). Michelle comes up with the idea of using Claire’s cooking ability to build her own cookie company working with Claire and her daughter Rachel (Anderson).

 

Thoughts on The Boss

 

Characters/PerformanceMichelle is a powerful businesswoman that loses her power after being be convicted of insider trader. She wants to rebuild her empire but must deal with her former business associates have turned against her. This character does become annoying very quickly and doesn’t fit between the ruthless businesswoman or the joke turning lady, we only needed one of these characteristics. Claire is the hard working assistant of Michelle that is the only one that would take Michelle in but her responsibilities to her daughter means she isn’t taken the risks Michelle can afford. Renault is the business rival and former lover of Michelle’s, he wants to see her crash and burn on every business venture.

Performance wise, Melissa McCarthy continues to play characters that just don’t seem to fit the film needed, we don’t need her to go this over the top for a story with meaning. Kristen Bell is good in her role knowing how to play this type of character well. Dinklage gets to have a lot of fun playing his role which can be over the top because of the rivalry created.

StoryThe story itself is about a ruthless businesswoman that steps on everyone who must go on a redemption story, this is all fine, it is the wildly over the top, jokes that make no sense to the context of the story that makes this all fall flat on its face.

ComedyThe comedy is weak, very weak throughout most of it just comes off awkward at times too.

SettingsThe settings are simple and show the different business world for Michelle to go through.

Final ThoughtsThis is a comedy that doesn’t manage to send over the correct message and just turns a failed attempt to make McCarthy funny.

 

Overall: Lazy comedy.

Rating

 

 

Tucker and Dale vs Evil (2010)

A surprising horror comedy hit.

When to hillbillies Tucker (Alan Tudyk) and Dale (Tyler Labine) go out into the woods to do up a cabin, a group of college kids get the wrong idea after Tucker and Dale save one of them Allison (Katrina Bowdon). the kids think they have kidnapped her and what follows is a series of comedy events where the kids try to rescue their friend.

Horror comedy at its best where mistaken identity. Tucker and Dale are both great innocent characters while the college kids offer great stupidity level. Filled with comedy deaths which can create some good laughs through out.

Favourite Character: Dale

Best Performance: Tyler Labine

Best Part: Tucker and a chainsaw leads to a very comical moment

My Rating 82%