Netflix has a sprawling library that is filled with obscure movies the average user has never heard of before. Some of these movies are unintentionally hilarious because they are so terrible. Far fewer movies are hilarious because they actually intended to be; one of them is “Tucker & Dale vs. Evil,” a clever and enjoyable parody of conventional horror movies.
The movie follows two groups: the titular Tucker (Alan Tudyk) and Dale (Tyler Labine), two West Virginia redneck best friends, and nine college kids out on a camping trip. The first time the two groups meet at a gas station sets off the tone for the rest of film. It’s love at first sight for Dale when he lays eyes on the beautiful Allison (Katrina Bowden).
Tucker urges him to talk to her, but it’s disastrous. Dale’s nervousness causes him to come across as the stereotypical creepy redneck you seen in any horror movie, and Allison and her friends are appropriately freaked out.
They are further spooked when fellow camper Chad tells the tale of the “Memorial Day Massacre,” where twenty years ago campers were murdered by hillbillies where they are now camping.
Coincidentally Tucker and Dale have purchased a run-down vacation home nearby, and attempt to renovate it. The two groups’ interactions drive the entire movie, and without giving too much away, more than a few people meet grisly ends.
While the movie’s clever plot would be enough to earn it high marks, it’s the characters that make it shine. Tucker and Dale are two of the most likeable main characters I’ve ever seen in a comedy. Their friendship is very believable and great to watch, and when matters get serious, their interactions are genuinely touching. It’s an indication of real quality when a movie can effortlessly blend being funny and genuine without it feeling awkward.
Netflix can at times feel like it’s only worth the few well-known titles that are heavily outnumbered by the hordes of obscure and crappy movies. “Tucker and Dale vs. Evil” completely defies this by being an uproariously funny movie. It’s just a shame you have to dig through so much garbage to reach it.