Eli Craig, USA, 2011, 89 min.
The draw of the film is its gimmick. Tucker and Dale, two well-meaning West Virginians, just happen to look like psycho hillbilly killers. But all they really want to do is go to their vacation home in the wilderness, and have a nice weekend of home improvement, fishing, and drinking.
A group of teenagers happen to be going on a camping trip in the same area. Through a series of comical misunderstandings, the teenagers beleive Tucker and Dale have kidnapped one of their own and are out to kill them all. But Tucker and Dale are just trying to be helpful, even though these crazy teenagers are accidentally killing themselves all over their property.
It’s a great gimmick, and has some great scenes. But the gimmick is over too quickly and the film turns into a standard, if comedic, horror film for the last third. But by that time I was in too much of a good mood to care. The leads and the film are likeable and the whole thing is over before you get a chance to want it to be better than it is.
This film wins the award “Best Use of Horror Cliches” for taking all of the tired old scenes and reversing them to great comedic effect.