I didn’t know what to expect going into Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, the new horror-comedy from Eli Craig that stars Firefly actor Alan Tudyk and Reaper actor Tyler Labine. Films categorized as “horror-comedy” are usually hit or miss for me, as they almost always fall into two categories: an intentional, slapstick parody of one or more horror franchises, or a film that was intended to be a serious horror movie that’s so bad you can’t help laughing.
In many cases, films that fall into the first category end up trying to spoof franchises that have more or less fallen into the second category, and you end up with a film that’s actually a parody of a film that’s already a caricature of a genre. And like a recording of a recording, it just ends up amplifying the flaws.
Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, however, was a different sort of movie entirely. Here’s an excerpt from my review for Digital Trends:
You know what? Let’s just say this right at the start: Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil could very well be the best horror-comedy made in a long, long time.
In fact, the brilliance of director Eli Craig’s first feature-length film can probably be summed up best by a line Alan Tudyk’s (Firefly/Serenity, Transformers: Dark of the Moon) character, Tucker, tells his best friend and fellow hillbilly, Dale (played by Reaper and Rise of the Planet of the Apes’ Tyler Labine), right around the midpoint of the film.
“It doesn’t matter what happened,” he says after one of the college kids camping in the woods nearby suddenly throws himself into their wood chipper. “What matters is what looks like what happened. And what happened looks pretty nasty.”
And that is what makes Tucker & Dale such a treat–the masterful way its director turns horror clichés on their head by having what “looks like what happened” only tell a fraction a fraction of the story.
You can continue reading the review at Digital Trends…