(For desired effect, please shotgun a beer every four sentences while reading this post)
What is it with Canada and white-trash alcoholic buddy movies? They're so fuckin' good at it, right? They gave us Bob and Doug McKenzie. They gave us Trailer Park Boys. Even Wayne's World (despite the blatant absence of massive alcohol consumption and American location) could be lumped in the genre, if only in spirit and tone. For some reason, Canada has cornered the market on movie and television productions about dirtbag brosephs chugging suds in backwoods areas. Why? Search me.
But what is quite possibly the finest film in said genre is also the one most often overlooked, a semi-obscure little gem of a mockumentary released in 2002 titled Fubar. If you've seen it, you know what I mean. If not, well, YOU SHOULD. Let's take a look, shall we?
Fubar was the full-length directorial debut of one Michael Dowse, a film-within-a-film about a small movie crew (headed by Gordon Skilling's Farrell Mitchner) making a documentary about two headbanging boozebros, Terry (David Lawrence) and Dean (Paul Spence). Terry and Dean's lives consist of little else besides shotgunning beer, manicuring their "hockey hair" (read as: Canadian mullets), and occasionally jamming out in the basement. They pretty much have it made. But things, as always, soon get complicated.
Part of what makes Fubar so goddamn watchable is the weird charisma of Spence's Dean, a completely shiftless douchebag with a bad moustache who you can't help but root for beginning at the first frame. He's a piece of shit, a violent drunk, a deadbeat dad, you name it. But Dean, at his core, has a heart of gold. Just listen to the lyrics he wrote for a song entitled "Woman Is A Danger Cat". OBVZ.
(Fun fact: Paul Spence also played Senator Ask Aak in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of The Sith. No fucking kidding.)
There are multiple factors that compel this movie from the level of "sloppy underfunded art house flick" to that of "awesome mandatory bro-fest". For one, it sports a gonzo hessian spirit akin to perennial IC favorites like Heavy Metal Parking Lot or Metallimania, blurring the line between reality and parody so well that several people within the film itself don't realize that they're participating in a work of fiction. Like the drunken fist-fighting jocks (another story altogether). In a way, Fubar surpasses like-minded movies like Gummo with its sheer joie de vivre -- even at its most depressing moments it's still a comedy, and a damn fine one at that.
When the aforementioned complications set in, the laughs keep coming. Sure, Deaner has been diagnosed with almost-surely-terminal testicular cancer (or "ball cancer", as he affectionately calls it), but does HE look worried about it? HELL NO! It's time to fucking PARTY like there's no tomorrow, right? Because for all he knows, there might not be one.
Another factor that sets Fubar apart from the rest of the pack is the plot twist that occurs about halfway through. I've made it a point not to reference said plot twist in any video clips contained herein because I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but let it just be said that it is one of the most unexpected turns of storyline you'll ever experience. Just when you think the movie's gonna go all sappy and emotional, it punches you square in the nose -- and reveals that it had more heart than you expected all along. It's brutal, it's metal, it works on very deep levels.
This is definitely a flick to check out when you're about eyeballs-deep in frosty hops, preferably with a roomful of Bros in a like-minded state. Fubar, after all, is a movie about being a Bro through thick and thin, about throwing up the Horns when life gets you down and laughing in the very face of death and disaster. It may be raunchy (I have been informed that the word "fuck" is uttered a total of 274 times during the course of its 76 minutes) and it may be lowbrow, but Fubar is still a "FILM" in the "artistic" sense, a modern fable about the lives of a couple extraordinary everymen. And what is a "fable" really, if not just another word for "history"?
THOR, "Fubar Is A Super Rocker" (from the Fubar OST). Not his finest hour, bet hey, fuck it, right?
I hear Fubar 2 is in the works, and I'm not sure how I feel about it.
Go Netflix it or buy it and tell me what you think.