Broken Lizard's Bitter Aftertaste

Broken Lizard's Bitter Aftertaste

Film Review

The film "Beerfest" covers the three B's of low grade comedy: beer, breasts and, uh, beer. It covers them very, very well but doesn't really cover much else.

The fourth movie from one of the best current comedy groups in the country, Broken Lizard, has the same strengths as their previous works and all the same weaknesses. Broken Lizard is great at writing sketch comedy and it's very clear they have many funny ideas which they execute perfectly. (Watch the first 10 minutes of "Super Troopers." I dare you not to laugh.) But their movies lack anything beyond the set-up from one funny sketch to the next. It's like the five Broken Lizard guys sit around thinking up hilarious sketches based around beer drinking or horror movies or police, and then forget they need to think up a plot to solidly tie everything together. It's impossible not to laugh at some of their antics but it's equally as hard to keep interested in what's going on in the movie.

Still "Beerfest" is their best attempt at moving their sketch comedy into a cohesive film, and it shows true promise. Terms like "Das Boot," (the final chugging apparatus at the Beerfest games) and "Jew Eye" will no doubt become as common in a college dorm as the "meow" game in "Super Troopers."

The five Broken Lizard guys (Paul Soter, Erik Stolhanske, Kevin Heffernan, Steve Lemme and Jay Chandraskhar) have the sort of comic timing that comes from years of working together. Chandrasekhar delivers a line about freezing beer that could have fallen flat on its face but instead comes off as one of the most memorable quotes of the summer. Heffernan plays the same loud-mouthed fat guy he is in all of Broken Lizards films, and it's truly amazing how far one man can take the same character and run with it.

The simple truth is Broken Lizard knows its audience as is clearly demonstrated by the fact that at least five pairs of breasts are doused in beer within the first 10 minutes of the movie, followed by a long list of beer drinking games.

So there's booze, babes and more booze and that pretty much sums up "Beerfest" in a nutshell. The three B's covered to a T, which rhymes with P, which here stands for plot — something Broken Lizard's film sorely lacks.

<1b>—Matthew Razak