Tucker & Dale vs. Evil - Movie Review

Released at last. Released at last ... even if it’s only limited.

If you’re fortunate enough to have screened director/writer Eli Craig’s horrific hillbilly comedy of errors you’ll rejoice that Magnolia Pictures has picked up the film festival fave and plans to release it on September 30 in theaters. If it doesn’t make it to your local indie cinema, don’t fret: as of August 26, the movie's also available on all their VOD platforms nationwide.

If you know not this “Evil” or “Tucker and Dale” I speak of, then let me tell you what you’ve missed, and why you don’t want to miss it again if it rumbles its rusty red truck and sidesplitting (literally and figuratively) spoofiness to a screen near you.

If your idea of a hillbilly is inspired by Deliverance, then < em>Tucker & Dale vs. Evil might make you rethink your banjo-picking prejudice (though it definitely tips its trucker cap to the traumatic river trip). There are two sides to this cautionary tale of misinterpretation: the hillbillies (Tucker and Dale, aka Alan Tudyk and Reaper's Tyler Labine) and beer-chugging college campers that include Allison (30 Rocks's Katrina Bowden). (Actually, there are three sides -- if you count a certain polo-shirt wearing “evil.”)

Need more reason to witness the horror of Tucker and Dale? Well here are a few that could sway you to exercise your popcorn-buying power.

Post-debt-ceiling vacation home decor tips

Preview the woodsy summer retreat in your post-debtmaggedon price range and pick up some thrifty decorating ideas -- like crafting a cheerful wind chime from the human and animal skeletons buried in your yard.

Love at first scythe: Labine & Craig

Imagine the cheek-pinching innocence and comic instincts of Jack Black in a movie (and script) with a brain (so not Gulliver’s Travels). From the characters and dialogue to the cleverly staged plot, Tucker and Dale vs. Evil is a pitch-perfect play on perspective. As pitch-perfect as the actors, especially Labine (an underrated comic actor equal, if not funnier, than similar shlumps like Jonah Hill). Along with Tudyk (whose world-wise Tucker effortlessly compliments his bumpkin Dale) and Bowden the sweetly disarming psychology major at the center of it all. You can’t help but care how they’ll fare in this backwoods farce. It’s no wonder it won South by Southwest’s Audience Award.

Speaking of scythes

There’s a lot to learn from Tucker and Dale, especially Dale’s dating blunders. For example:

Rule #1 – Put your scythe away before you make small talk with the ladies.

Rule #2 – “Yur” vs. “Your,” as in “We’ve got yur friend”: learn the difference between sounding like a a good Samaritan or a hick that deep-fries good Samaritans and eats them.

Never judge a hillbilly by his grubby overalls (Say "I shure do" instead)

Perhaps in the past you’ve overlooked the love of your life because of redneck stereotypes that made you run for cover. Take a cue from Tucker and Dale and give that toothpick-chewing, PBR-pounding stranger a chance (don’t let the pitchfork scare you off).

Preppies are eviiill

You’ve always known it, finally there’s proof -- and his name is Chad (of course).

Fight for box-office good, not evil

Enough moviegoers are empowering Michael Bay and the makers of Conan the Barbarian 2011; it’s time we all toss our nine bucks into the proverbial woodchipper (don’t ask me what proverb) and spit out enough money to make Tucker & Dale and other truly deserving, truly funny indie flicks a blazing success. Let's let Hollywood hear our demand for more entertaining and intelligent films.