I love silly horror movies… I think that much goes without saying. I also love my home town of Pittsburgh, PA. It’s kind of a silly place. People who have never been here have this image of a tough blue collar town that has its skies blackened from the hundreds of steel mills operating 24/7. Well, the steel mills have been closed for like 40 years, and while a lot of that salt of the earth type mentality still remains, the fact of the matter is this… Pittsburgh is a silly place you guys. We have a terrifying statue of a beloved children’s television icon, a giant rubber duck was here for a bit, and every year on 4th of July weekend, we host an international Furry convention. This isn’t a joke… It really happens. While Pittsburgh’s contribution to cinema is kind of relegated to obscure movies that nobody has ever seen, like Jack Reacher or the shitty Batman, sometimes, something important is made here that begs to be seen. I’m of course talking about Bigfoot: The Movie.
Bigfoot: The Movie is a horror/comedy starring Curt Wootton, who you may know as Pittsburgh Dad. Or not… have people from outside of Pittsburgh actually seen Pittsburgh Dad? Anyway, he’s somewhat of a local celebrity, and whether or not you enjoy his schtick, it’s clear that he gets how silly typical Yinzers are. It’s also good to see him doing something different, and I always root for local people making good. It also features Joanie Dodds, the runner up from season 6 of America’s Next Top Model, which I take a tremendous amount of pride/shame in knowing without looking it up. So, we’re working with some degree of “star power” here… At least more than most low budget horror flicks are working with.
Bigfoot is the story of a group of drunken idiots who, after seeing their friend mauled by the titular creature, set out to put an end to it. Of course, they discover a massive conspiracy, but nobody believes a word they say on account of the whole drunken idiocy thing. So, the burden of stopping the creature before it kills again falls squarely on their quasi-capable shoulders. This is really my favorite kind of story, whether it be Tucker & Dale, the books of David Wong, or stuff I’ve talked about on this site such as The Moleman of Belmont Avenue or Beaster Day. It’s a fun trope to play with, especially in tongue in cheek horror movies, and it works here. I just like the idea of the fate of the world being decided on the actions of guys you wouldn’t even trust to balance a checkbook.
bigfoot3.jpg The drunken idiots in question
For something low budget, this movie actually looks pretty damn good. The shot quality and composition, while nothing groundbreaking, are better than you’d expect to find in a movie like this. The script is well paced and full of jokes that are actually jokes. One of my major peeves in movies like this is that they rely too much on the wackiness of the situations. As wacky as stuff gets here, it’s never too over the top, and the characters all have their own little moments to shine. Wootton in particular is good here as Chuck, a sort of hyper-confident white trash drunken asshole. A character like this can be a fine line to walk as far as connecting with an audience, but he brings a certain level of charm to Chuck, where he never stops being someone the audience roots for.
The location plays somewhat of a character in this movie, too. You don’t need to be from Western Pennsylvania to appreciate it, but it definitely helps. Whether it’s scenic shots of driving into Pittsburgh at night, or the way people out in the sticks view the city and vise versa, or the accents… oh god, the accents… It’s all important to the overall feel of this movie. As someone who calls this city home, I’m sure I appreciated it on a different level as a person somewhere else, but you don’t need to be from here to enjoy these things. Except the accents. Those can be pretty jarring.
Real talk here, guys. I enjoyed the hell out of this movie. It’s out there in the world to get a digital copy of, or even see in a theater if you’re in the greater Pittsburgh area. I try to stay pretty spoiler free on stuff most people haven’t had a chance to see yet, and this one deserves to be seen if you like big dumb horror comedies. Find it… Watch it… Love it. Next time I promise to find a turd to tear into, but for the time being, just take my word for it that this is actually something you might enjoy watching for completely unironic reasons.
check out http://www.bigfootthemovie.com/ for info on screenings, and links to purchase physical or digital copies of the movie.
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