Super Troopers 2 (2018)
Critic Consensus: Meow that the wait for Super Troopers 2 is finally over, all but the most devoted fans mustache themselves why they waited so long for such cruel and tragic shenanigans.
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as Arcot 'Thorny' Ramathorn
as Rod Farva
as MacIntyre 'Mac' Womack
as Jeff Foster
as Robert 'Rabbit' Roto
as Captain O'Hagan
as Governor Jessman
as Guy Le Franc
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Critic Reviews for Super Troopers 2
Too often, the writers-stars settle for childish bad taste over real wit; there are incessant references to male genitalia but the movie is too timid to follow through when two macho guys are dared to kiss.
You'd think with 17 years at their disposal these guys would be able to come up with some jokes that weren't so half-baked and dumb. Alas, this is low-hanging fruit all the way.
Broken Lizard hasn't changed enough to keep up with the times, turning in a badly degraded copy of the original. Stale, unfunny and offensive is quite the hat trick.
There are still some decent laughs but not as many as one might expect or hope for.
This sequel isn't just more of the same from Broken Lizard-it's a lot more, and for no good reason.
What Super Troopers 2 is missing, and what the original more-or-less had, is that underdog dynamic. A big part of the problem is that the troopers are in charge this time, and they're mostly just abusing their power for petty, selfish reasons.
Audience Reviews for Super Troopers 2
The moment when we see Farva through heat vision goggles as he casually pisses and farts while yelling at the camera, "I'm still gonna go back and get that butter tart yule log!" is the hardest I've laughed in a long time.
A lot of people don't like the Eagles of Death Metal. I can't say I blame you if you aren't into tongue-in-cheek rock 'n' roll tropes or ass-backward conservative demagoguery in the wake of one of the most tragic terror attacks in the western world. I've been a fan of them since their inception in the obscure but quality Desert Sessions and rocked the "Live at Slims" bootleg that preceded their first official release "Peace Love Death Metal". I met Jesse Hughes and Dave Catching by chance about 10 years ago, and they were both funny, genuinely warm fellows. When the horrors of that fateful night at the Bataclan in Paris transpired, not even 9/11 had rocked my perception of the Earth and its horrifying goings-on to that degree. Both primary songwriters Hughes and Joshua Homme have since publicly proven themselves to be complicated and flawed individuals (some would say "douche bags"), but I try to divorce the art from the artist when it's more convenient for me. "Yay!" for double standards. See the documentaries The Redemption of the Devil and Nos Amis for an insightful before and after of Hughes, a man who was at the epicenter of that violence. He was always a little off, his mental and emotional state an eccentric tapestry painted by too many drugs and the archaic ideologies of mid-20th century America, ideologies held mostly by a demographic of people who would look down upon Hughes' lifestyle of rock star excess. If you can manage to get past his egregious pro-gun remarks after the Parkland school shooting or are un/fortunate enough to live in a political vacuum, at the heart of the music of Eagles of Death Metal is a manically stupid lust for life. It only makes sense that they would provide the soundtrack to an over-the-top, politically irreverent comedy about cops abusing their power in violent, illegal ways. In the same way that Hughes pines for the bygone days of Reagan, the Broken Lizard troupe cull from the bad 90's comedy movie playbook. There's gay-panic, transphobic gender politics, stupid accents, insensitivity towards First Nations people, puerile toxic masculinity, patriarchal wish-fulfillment, Rob Lowe, and, of course, the fat guy farts and falls down. Most of the humor feels lazy, many times forced, and occasionally in baffling poor taste, but I would be remiss if I didn't laugh at something about every five minutes. I suppose I'm an easy mark for low-brow humor and cringe-inducing pun play, but who doesn't appreciate a little slapstick from time to time? Maybe some of us are misreading the whole thing, like it's a critique on the police state, nationalistic isolationism, and hateful identity politics. I really doubt it though. This movie doesn't need to exist, but as the success of the nearly unprecedented crowdfunding venture facilitating it demonstrated, the fans wanted it. Now, think what you will of those fans, those people are going to get what they paid for. So, go ahead and avoid it like the plague if it doesn't sound like your bag and deride Broken Lizard for producing it. I have a feeling that despite Eagles of Death Metal and Super Troopers 2 gladly flopping on the wrong side of history, at least they're having a good time over there. However, everyone would be better off watching Wrong Cops by Quentin Dupieux instead.
Sixteen years after the original film, Super Troopers 2 is coming to theaters thanks to a record-breaking campaign on the fundraising site Indiegogo. The comedy team, Broken Lizard, finds itself somewhat in a similar lace Rob Thomas and the Veronica Mars team did after their successful Kickstarter haul got them a feature film. It's primarily the fans that have supplied the funds for the project, and in doing so proven a viable audience for any other potential future financial backers. Therefore, when the finished product comes together, are you designing the movie for that core base of fans that may or may not be looking for more of what they enjoyed the first time around. Does servicing the fans outweigh telling something original and expanding the brand? Credit to the Broken Lizard team that very few of the jokes from the first film are outright repeated and there are sparing references in general to the earlier movie. Super Troopers 2 exists on its own merits; however, it feels like a shaggy, and amiable if mostly lackluster comedy. In the years since the first film, the state troopers for Vermont have been reassigned to a new task. The Canadian border is being renegotiated, and a swath of Canada is now going to be declared American territory. The troopers, Mac (Steve Lemme), Rabbit (Erik Stolhanske), Thorny (Jay Chandrasekhar, also serving as director again), Foster (Paul Soter), and Farva (Kevin Hefferman), are reunited with their old Captain (Brian Cox) and entrusted by the Governor (Lynda Carter) and a local, small town mayor (Rob Lowe) with upholding law and order. The guys uncover a smuggling conspiracy that plans on using the switching border to great financial gain, but mostly they just mess with people. All the guys are back and they're back to their old hijinks and now they're all pushing fifty, which makes things feel a little weird. The Super Troopers style of comedy is pretty juvenile, silly, slapstick-heavy, with the occasional meta-textual aside. It's a low-key sort of comedy that provides chuckles but rarely the bigger, memorable laughs. Your mileage will vary, as all comedies do, but I chuckled about five to ten times in the movie. There are a couple solid running jokes that are nicely set up for payoffs, like an oft-referred to tragic accident involving Fred Savage and the troopers. There are glimpses of a stranger, more interesting comedy here that will never be seen, like an opening segment that takes some unexpected turns. The Super Troopers 2 that ends up on screen feels a bit like a flailing act that is still trying to find laughs after the joke ends. The plot doesn't matter in this kind of movie so much as the jokes, and the quality of jokes is rather mediocre, falling back on tired tropes and dated stereotypes. The jokes about Canada rehash lots of well-worn clichés about our neighbors to the north (hockey, vowels, politeness, hockey). Here's an example of the untapped potential for the comedy. There's a funny bit where Farva goes to a local restaurant, discovers a buy-ten-liters-get-a-free-dessert punch card offer, and orders ten liters of soda to drink all at once. It's drawn out in a way that feels like it's going to be the setup for a big punch line. The man has ten liters of soda occupying his bladder. I'm thinking maybe Farva's powerful stream of urine will save the day unexpectedly from the villains at a fortunate moment. At least something, right? All that happens is he's later seen peeing in the woods. That's it. Why even bother with something as outlandish as this setup if there is no inspired payoff? Worse, there are entire lanes of humor that feel painfully dated, unfunny, and like leftovers from an earlier version of the script from the early 2000s. Thorny becomes addicted to female hormone pills ("Flova Scotia") and behaved with tired gender tropes like becoming overly emotional and bitchy (see, it's funny because... that's what ladies... yeah...). It's Thorny's whole character for the movie and it feels so depressingly lazy. You get a sense that everyone was so happy to be back together that the comedy development took a back seat to the fun of the reunion. It feels like a loose collection of untapped comedy premises. Super Troopers 2 has a lot of free time and for a good while becomes a wacky, prank battle between the Americans and Canucks. It's just that a group of fifty-year-old dudes behaving like children can come across as past its prime comedy without further characterization. As someone who found the original Super Troopers to be overrated, what saved the sequel for me was the exuberance of the performances to balance out the lackluster laughs. The Broken Lizard guys have built up an outstanding chemistry and camaraderie together over the course of several decades. These guys an be very funny and they go above and beyond to sell their zany jokes and larger-than-life characters, best typified with Hefferman (Sky High). Farva is meant to be obvious, obnoxious, and buffoonish, and my God does Hefferman seem to be exploding with energy. His spirited line readings seem to exercise every muscle in his face. It's so committed and enthusiastic that Hefferman elevates okay jokes into newly funny jokes. In a similar fashion, the Canadian side characters played by Will Sasso, Tyler Labine, and Hayes MacArthur provide some genuine laughs from their hyperactive and at times incomprehensible cartoon Mounties. Every time they were onscreen I knew I would, at minimum, be amused. Watching skilled performers have fun and actually put forth a worthy effort is a recipe that can make an otherwise boring comedy worth watching, and that's Super Troopers 2. I must also add that the Broken Lizard guys have aged tremendously well and look remarkably similar to how they did in the mid 2000s. Chandrasekhar even appears shirtless and with a toned physique. Again, all pushing fifty. Congrats on the amazing genetics, gang. The Broken Lizard guys may have not had a comedy released since 2009's The Slammin' Salmon and haven't had a theatrically released film since 2006's Beerfest. Perhaps their time of relevance as a comedic group has come and gone, so it makes sense to go back to their biggest hit. The original Super Troopers may have been their breakout but I still find their first film, 1996's Puddle Cruiser, as the group's best. It's a sweet rom-com with enjoyable characters and wit. I've enjoyed the ideas and performances in several of their movies, but their first film managed to bring it all together the best (I think the crazier Beerfest is their second best). Even with lesser material, the Broken Lizard guys have a genial, likable screen chemistry that can smooth over comedy misfires and dropped potential. Super Troopers 2 is like a reheated meal you remember enjoying but lacks that same sense of flavor. You could do worse but you could also certainly do better. Nate's Grade: C
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