Lost Picture Show: Tucker And Dale vs. Evil

bill bodkin looks at the backwoods horror comedy …

Release Date: Limited release Oct. 2, 2011

First Saw It: Netflix in February

What Drew Me To See It: As a fan of horror comedies like Shaun Of The Dead and Zombieland, this looked right up my alley. The trailer perfectly portrayed what I thought this film was — a smart inversion of the killer hillbilly horror genre.

Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine in TUCKER & DALE VS. EVIL, a Magnet Release. Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing.

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

Hey Isn’t That?: Yes, this cast has a slew of people you’ve seen before. Tyler Labine was the star of the short-lived FOX series Sons Of Tuscon. Alan Tudyk, better known as Pirate Steve from Dodgeball, is also known for his roles in Knocked Up, Firefly and Suburgatory. Katrina Bowden is a Cerie on 30 Rock and Bradon Jay McLaren was Bennett Ahmed on AMC’s The Killing.

Director: Eli Craig

The Best Performance: Tyler Labine is terrific as the beer-gutted, hopeless romantic Dale. He’s a gentle, beer-soaked giant. Labine’s comedic timing both verbal and physical are spot-on, and when Dale is finally provoked to unleash his inner psycho hillbilly, the transition is more than believable.

The Supporting Scene Stealer: Not surprisingly, Alan Tudyk steal the shows. He did it in Knocked Up, Firefly, Serenity, Dodgeball and weekly on Suburgatory. He gives the PBR-loving Tucker a quit wit, and his chemistry with Labine’s Dale is perfect. In fact, it’s so good that I’d love to see a sequel.

The Moment To Remember: The siege of Tucker and Dale’s ‘summer home’ by the college kids in an attempt to ‘rescue’ their friend Allison. Instead, they of a rescue mission it become a hilarious suicide mission, including this accident with a wood chipper.

The Memorable Quote:

Dale: You thought I looked like some kind of freak?

Allison: We misjudged you, Dale. I’m … I’m really sorry.

Dale: Don’t be sorry, it’s my fault. I should have known if a guy like me talked to a girl like you, somebody would end up dead.

The Groan Moment: Honestly … there’s no real groans here. The script takes the cliche horror moments and plays them for all their cliche value, which makes this horror comedy fresh and original.

Why I Can’t Stop Watching It: This movie really takes you by surprise at just how smart it is. The whole ‘mistaken identity’ comedic conceit is usually tired and executed poorly. Here, it’s completely turns a tired horror subgenre on its head and makes for great comedy. The comedic moments are wonderful site gags, set up very subtly with grand and usually bloody results.

Bill Bodkin is the gray bearded owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, he is lucky husband, and proud father to a beautiful daughter named Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites