Directed by Michael Douse
In the spirit of mockumentaries like This is Spinal Tap and The Comic Strip Presents: Bad News, comes a rough, faux documentary that celebrates the life of the “headbanger”. From its description, this low budget, independent flick from Canada seems so simplistic, but it is actually one huge laugh riot with a different feel to the same style films that have preceded it. Even the topic of cancer and accidental death is tastefully portrayed in a comedic light within a film that is considered anything but tasteful.
In-film documentary filmmaker Farrel (Gordon Skilling) decides to chronicle the lives of two twenty-something headbangers Terry (Dave Lawrence) and Dean (Paul Spence), or “Deaner” as he is affectionately referred to by Terry. This is his film but it is their story. Terry makes money at a table shop where he claims to make tables for a living, going to get lengths explaining the table-making process. But the factory owner informs us that all he really does is load the tables onto the truck because he is too incompetent to do anything else of value at his shop. As incompetent as Terry is, Dean is ten times useless, not even understanding his right from his left hand. He is an out of work guy living at Terry’s pad who has a child with a chick named Trixie (Tracey Lawrence), to whom he has no romantic relationship with, and plays bass in a little (and terrible) garage band.
Although their teenage years are well behind them, the duo live the headbanging lifestyle of listening to loud music and drinking beer like there is no tomorrow. They shotgun Pilsner like it’s their job and party hard while neglecting any and all adult responsibility in life. Even their fearless leader Tron (Andrew Sparacino) has earned employment as well as decent woman to be with and totally left their whacky lifestyle. But that doesn’t stop the guys from trying to pull him back in any chance they get.
When Farrel discovers that Dean has an enlarged bump on his testicle, he informs Trixie who then forces Dean to see a physician. The doctor informs him that the testicle must be removed, so Terry and Dean embark on one last wild weekend before his surgery and following chemo treatment. And boy what a zany weekend it turns out to be.
If Beavis and Butthead were binge drinkers from the Great White North and mated with Doug and Bob McKenzie, this would be their spawn. Terry and Dean are two characters you will fall in love with, even though you really shouldn’t but simply can’t help the fact that you do. They drink, which leads to smashing up and burning objects, including themselves. Their vernacular is a trip as well. Besides dropping the F-Bomb as much as they spout real words, they repeatedly recite the catchphrase “Give’er!”, which apparently is the Canadian version of Get ‘Er Done!”
Lawrence and Spence are either Oscar-worthy actors or they really are hammered in the scenes where they have ingested copious amounts of Pilsner. In fact, they are very good in blurring the lines between reality and the film in which they are starring in due to their overall performances. Early in the film, you will begin to forget you are watching a mockumentary and keep thinking you are watching an actual documentary. Skilling’s turn as Farrel continuously sells this confusion, executing his straight man character to perfection.
This line is well blurred despite the fact that there is a disclaimer at the beginning, which hilariously states that this film is a documentary and apologizes to those who appear in the film who were told it was real. Evidence of this can be seen during a segment where two drunken Canadians scrap in a real life, bare knuckles boxing match leading to one of them getting a tooth knocked clean out of his head.
This is a film that can be enjoyed whether you are Canadian, Australian or are from the States. Probably one of the best low budget mock-ups you probably have not heard about, its cult success spawned a bigger budget sequel eight years later. Don’t miss out and “Give‘er” a try!
|3.5 out of 5 Drunken Dogs|