Movie Review: Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (2010)

And the Month of Spooks continues. So what’s on the menu this time? Hillbillies and blood? Cool.

Ladies and gents… “Tucker and Dale vs. Evil”.

A group of god damn stupid college kids decide to go on a trip to the middle of nowhere. When they arrive they run into a pair of hillbillies named Tucker (Alan Tudyk) and Dale (Tyler Labine), whom the college kids mistake for psycho killers. And of course chaos ensues and escalates. And I’m just gonna say it, this is a great plot. It’s basically a lampooning of backwoods horror movies, where instead of the hillbillies being villains, they’re the good guys. But the plot does have a surprising amount of tension, and even a surprising amount of heart. All of it is actually quite fascinating to witness, to see what twists and turns it’ll take. It’s just a solid blend of tense horror-stuff and fun spoofing. Great plot.

The characters in this boil down to two separate things: Well developed and interesting ones, and undeveloped idiots… and they both have a place in this movie. Alan Tudyk plays Tucker, one of the titular hillbillies. He’s a fairly nice guy who just wants to have a relaxing vacation with his best buddy up at a cabin, but the plot said no. And Tudyk is great in the role. Tyler Labine plays Dale, the second eponymous character. He’s not the brightest bulb of the bunch, but he’s such a warm-hearted guy who just wants everyone to be nice. And Labine is great in the role. Katrina Bowden plays Allison, a young woman that Tucker and Dale befriends. She even forms a bit of a bond with Dale and it’s kind of sweet and cute. And Bowden is really good in the role. Then we have Jesse Moss as Chad (of course the crazy frat douche is named fucking Chad!), the crazy frat douche leading the college group’s efforts to take down Tucker and Dale. He’s a despicable douchebag and credit to Jesse Moss, because that is a great performance… I haven’t seen a character that worthy of hate in quite a while. Great job, sir. The rest of the college kid cast isn’t worth going over, but they all do a good job. It’s a solid cast.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Shields & Andrew Kaiser and they did a good job. It’s for the most part your typical intense horror movie score. But there’s also a bit of a twist in it where they add some typical hillbilly instruments like harmonica and banjo, making for a very fun sound that worked incredibly well for the movie.

The movie was directed by Eli Craig who I think did a great job with it. His directing manages to come off as both intense and somewhat wacky, which is clearly the intention with the entire movie. It really helps the movie feel fun and fast-paced. And since it’s a comedy we should talk about the humor. So is the humor here funny? Nope… it’s fucking hilarious. A lot of the humor is fairly dark which might put some people off, but I just laughed at it. Both simple chuckles and laugh out loud moments. But the humor doesn’t make it feel less like a horror movie, as it still gives off the vibe of old school slasher/backwoods movies, and I like that. It’s a a great blend of horror and comedy. And there’s a lot of blood and gore here for those who enjoy such things in movies. Just thought I’d mention that… could be a good warning for squeamish people.

This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 84% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 65/100. Roger Ebert gave it 3/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,6/10.

“Tucker and Dale vs. Evil” is absolutely awesome. It has a great plot, great characters, great performances, really good music, great directing, and great humor. Time for my final score. *Y’all*. My final score for “Tucker and Dale vs. Evil” is a 9,87/10. Which means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Tucker and Dale vs. Evil” is now completed.

Yippee yee-haw, y’all.

Series Review: Ozark – Season 1 (2017)

Netflix seems to be taking over the entertainment world. Sure, Amazon and Hulu aren’t doing too poorly either, and HBO gets all the viewers thanks to “Game of Thrones”, but it really feels like Netflix is the ruler of the watchable media.

Ladies and gents, welcome to… “Ozark”.

Marty Byrde (Jason Bateman) seems like your average man. He has a wife (Laura Linney), two kids (Sofia Hublitz & Skylar Gaertner), and a steady job as a financial advisor. However, he has secretly been laundering money for a Mexican drug cartel. And when his dealings with them goes to hell, Marty decides to quickly move him and his family out to the Missouri Ozarks to try to try to sort this shit out. So now we have our crime-drama plot. And is it any good? Yeah, I’d say so. It’s very serious and surprisingly deep. Not deep in a mindfuck kind of way, but it just has layers to it. My only problem with it is that the pacing at times can get a little too slow. I have no problem with a slow burn, and for the most part this show’s slow burn is just fine, but there are times where it drags it’s feet a little bit too much. Mainly in a couple of episodes near the middle of the season. But like I said, for the most part it’s fine. And the overall plot is solid enough that the occasional pacing problem doesn’t hurt it too much.

The characters here are all troubled, layered, and just overall interesting. Jason Bateman is great as Marty Byrde, this highly intelligent and cunning man who just wants to protect his family (and his life). He can at times seem like a dick, but then I remember “Oh yeah, Mexican gangsters might kill him and his family”, so it can be accepted. And like I said, Bateman is great in the role. Laura Linney plays Marty’s wife, Wendy, a woman who has secrets of her own as she’s trying to accept this situations with Marty and moving and all that. And Linney is great in the role. Sofia Hublitz and Skylar Gaertner as Marty’s kids are really good in the roles, going through some interesting situations/arcs of their own throughout the season. Julia Garner plays Ruth Langmore, a local girl who is clever and constantly conniving, and she was probably my favorite character in the show. And Garner was great in the role. We also get Jason Butler Harner as Roy Petty, an FBI agent investigating Marty’s activities. He’s quite the interesting dude, and Harner is great in the role. I also want to mention Esai Morales who shows up at a few points in the season as Del, the main gangster that wants Marty’s money. The dude is a great mix of charming and intimidating, with Morales giving a great performance. Every actor in this show does a good job.

The score for the show was composed by Danny Bensi & Saunder Jurriaans amd it was great. Dark, chilling, eerie, and overall well composed, it often helps elevate the suspense in a lot of scenes. There’s also a good amount of licensed tracks used throughout the show that help set certain moods too, which I liked.

This show was created by Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams (not the Mr. Weasley one, totally different Mark Williams). And it was directed by a whole bunch of other people, including Jason Bateman who did a few. And the show is tightly directed, with as muc hsuspense as possible being squeezed out of a lot of scenes. It’s also a good looking show, with an often cool blue hue that gives the show a cold and eerie feel. There’s also a little bit of dark humor to it which I thought added a little bit to it.

This show came out fairly recently, but it has still been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 65% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 68/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,8/10 and is ranked #166 on the “Top 250 TV” list (as of writing this, as I refuse to update this in case of change).

“Ozark” is another solid show from Netflix. It has a really good plot, really good characters, great performances, great music, and great directing. The only problem is the previously mentioned pacing issues. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Ozark” season 1 is a 9,21/10. So while it has a few flaws, I’d say that you should still watch it!

Season 1 of “Ozark” is now completed.

If you’re still in denial about Jason Bateman’s dramatic talents, go watch “The Gift”. He’s great in that.