Starring: Tyler Labine, Alan Tudyk, Katrina Bowden
Director: Eli Craig
Running Time: 89 mins
Tucker And Dale Vs. Evil is an American film about two hillbillies who, while on vacation in a dilapidated log cabin in the woods, are attacked by a group of college kids who think that they’re trying to kill them.
This is definitely amongst the best of the modern horror parody movies, thanks to brilliantly subversive characters and plot, pretty funny humour, strong performances and a still exciting and tense atmosphere that makes this not just a good parody movie, but simply a strong movie on its own.
The whole premise is that we’re seeing this ‘teens getting killed in the woods’ story from the other side, the view of the supposed killers. In this film, Tucker And Dale are two harmless hillbillies, but the college kids immediately take them for demented psycho killers after they rescue a girl’s life while the kids go skinny dipping at night.
What ensues then is a sequence of hilarious accidents that boil over into the most ridiculously unbelievable case of misunderstandings you’ve ever seen, where every time Tucker And Dale attempt to reason with the kids, they just run away screaming thinking they’re going to die.
That premise works really well here, and maintains a consistent level of hilarity from start to finish, thereby brilliantly satirising the horror genre and showing just how stupid these teen horror movies can be, particularly the extremely superficial and one-dimensional behaviour of the teen protagonists.
But this film goes beyond just parodying and copying other horror movies like Scary Movie or Scream, it evolves into its own thrilling and massively entertaining story that stands alone as a great plot whether it’s a parody or not.
The subversive nature of the plot, i.e. turning the college kids into the bad guys, is brilliantly funny, but it also makes for an oddly uncomfortable watch, as you go against everything that you know about horror films and end up really wanting the kids to die, whereas had this been told as a normal teen horror movie, you’d be rooting for the opposite team, so the fact that this film manages to pull that off so well is hugely impressive.
Overall, I’ll give Tucker And Dale vs. Evil a 7.5, because it’s a hugely funny comedy, with an exciting enough individual plot to boot, but it’s the subversive and satirical nature of the plot and characters that make this a properly original and impressive film.