I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell
This movie is fucking terrible. I wanted to run across the rain-slick pavement outside with the slightest chance I might slip and hit my head on the concrete, bruising my brain in the exact spot where the ability to write exists, just so I wouldn't have to write this review. But I received it as a screener, so there's responsibility involved. But let me tell you that I got exactly what I paid: nothing. This bullshit makes American Pie appear Orwellian in comparison. It's a worse adaptation than even Stephen King books get put through; Dreamcatcher is a damned fine example (I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell is full of ass-weasels). And it was adapted by the guy who wrote it!
If you enjoyed this movie, avoid this review by bobbing for rocks at the bottom of the ocean. I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell swirls around an ill-planned bachelor party that Tucker Max (Matt Czuchry) wants to give his good friend, Dan (Geoff Stults), taking him to a faraway strip club against the wishes of Dan's future wife, Kristy (Keri Lynn Pratt). They're accompanied by their morose, Banky-Lite friend Drew (Jesse Bradford). Drew just got dumped by a girl and so now he's a chasm of dirty wit and sex appall. These guys are three of the worst examples of the male gender ever put to film. I'm putting that out there. Especially Drew, because Jesse Bradford's eyebrows are so goddamned smarmy, every time he talks I wish someone would murder his face.
I can really only repeat a more vulgar version of Cinemablend scribe Katey's theatrical review of this turdbomb. I live in Shreveport/Bossier, LA, where this movie was mostly filmed, but I couldn't recognize much, because I've never seen this city so terribly framed before. It's filmed like a pilot for M2, and contains fatally out-of-place interstitial edits when a character is telling a particularly boring story with enthusiasm, which is every story. In particular, Drew talks about "pancakewiches" on the trip out of town, and then it cuts to this shitty, harsh-looking footage of childish depictions of what he's saying. The same trick happens a few times later when Tucker spits his raunchy stories. Time is wasted conveying how ill-conceived this "schmotif" is. Director Bob Gosse must have been as drunk as the real Tucker Max from day one on this project. The editing blows, too.
The story's pacing is as fluid as the ice age, so this paragraph will follow as such. Tucker will try his hardest to be as offensive as possible, and maybe to a staunchly conservative great-grandmother who spent her formative years chained to a line of Jews, it is. Nothing touches the book, though, even the stuff taken from the book, because of balloon-animal line-readings. I may be old-fashioned in calling music releases albums instead of CDs, but I'm not so out there that I think midget sex is either taboo or hilarious. The first batch of class-act dialogue centers around sex with a deaf girl, and who has or has not done it. After that, Tucker is completely gone from the story, because quip-meister Drew is hanging out with a stripper, and we have to follow him for whatever reason, or maybe Dan and Kristy are having a stale argument, and we have to watch the whole thing. So then when everybody's together, it's right back to Crapatow dialogue that is painful to watch if stilted speech bothers you. Amateur porn should have been considered casting tapes rather than the careers of these duds. Somehow, the thing still manages to completely adhere to the Syd Field A-B-C plot structure, which begins, middles, and ends more predictably than a Globetrotter game. Tucker Max the person may call himself an asshole for the things he's done in his past, but he hadn't even taken a part in writing this script yet, so he underestimated things.
I really want to go off on this cast for another three pages or so, but I've only got the rest of my life to watch other movies and take bong hits to replace the memory of ever having watched Jesse Bradford get more work to play a lifeless, gratuitous plug of a terribly written mouthpiece. The character Drew will obviously grow older and beat women senseless against dresser drawers. Perhaps because they beat him at a video game or had an opinion or something. Why would I want this guy to redeem himself by finding a (not-yet inappropriate) relationship with a stripper's kid, whom he probably has more in common with? Fuck that. Tucker and Dan included. Tucker doesn't even redeem himself. He just lives through an actual part of the book, one of the best parts, and it's totally ruined by all involved. Dan and Kristy suck as a couple. If they're real, somebody let them know that they suck. If they're fake, and Drew is also fake, then what the fuck do they exist on film for? Tucker Max should have just let a camera follow him around, because if the things that come out of Matt Czuchry's mouth are the same things that come out of his, and in the same way, then I seriously would have to see it. Because I call bullshit, but mostly on Czuchry.
This disc is a double-edged sword. It has the movie on it, first of all. And an extra called "Outtakes," which I thought would be nice, at least, if maybe a couple of goofed lines made me smile, which the movie didn't. But no, it turns out to be a half hour of deleted and alternate scenes from the feature. You can imagine how the cutting room floor must have felt, losing all that warmth. Avoid this movie like the post-natal abortion that it is.
Reviewed By: Nick Venable