Friday, November 8, 2013

Bad Movie Endurance Test 12: Tuck Bushman and the Legend of Piddledown Dale

Doesn't the title Tuck Busman and the Legend of Piddledown Dale sound delightful. It sounds like it should be a comical Hound of the Baskervilles about a brilliant bowler-hatted inspector who uses his keen detective mind to uncover Scooby Doo-style shenanigans in the sleepy village of Piddledown Dale. If I were to make a movie with that title, it would definitely include a wacky chases scene with lots of near-misses and hilarious sight gags.

Of course, I didn't make this movie and it's part of the Freakshow Cinema collection, so I knew it wouldn't live up to the title. I was fully prepared for a darkly lit found footage movie with bad acting and an ambiguous ending. Maybe it would even include some teen-angsty philosophy or a misguided attempt at a social or political message. There would almost certainly be Satanists, witches, or maybe gypsies if this was one of the more creative filmmakers in the collection. Filters and strobe lights were unavoidable.

I wasn't that lucky, either. The film is British, wants to be a comedy, and even has the Scooby-Doo style plot. Unfortunately, the filmmakers define comedy as "wearing fake beards and silly costumes while talking in mostly-unintelligible funny voices." While there are occasional attempts at actual gags, these are so predictable, overused, or unfunny that they make the writers of the later installments of the  ____ Movie series seem like Mel Fucking Brooks by comparison. The result is the kind of movie that's so tedious that the viewers main concern during each scene is how long the scene will last. The answer is always "too long."

The only reason I was able to watch this movie all the way through was that I'd already watched the other 11 movies in the set, so turning this one off would have meant defeat. I kept repeating to myself, "It's only 95 minutes long. It's only 95 minutes long. It's only 95 minutes long." It felt like much longer.

Takeaway: Try to imagine a Monty Python skit written by Dick Cheney and performed by British versions of Daniel Tosh, Pauley Shore, and their closest friends. Then imagine it lasting an hour and a half. Then try to convince yourself that life is still worth living. Don't expect to succeed.
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