This celebration of Ireland’s redneck lads should have been called “Muckers go to Europe.”
How It’s New York: This New York premiere took place on Oct. 6 in NYU’s Cantor Film Center, as part of this year’s Irish Film New York festival.
How It’s Irish: Not just Irish, but quintessentially so because the characters are from the “Wesht,” Ireland’s answer to the redneck heartland. The unsophisticated la-a-ads who set off for a soccer match in Poland are no match for mainland Europe.
The Hardy Bucks Movie is one of just two that I’ve walked out on in my life. Boredom was what connects the two, and, perhaps, particular male interest (the other was a Sci-Fi film in my teens). It’s the antithesis of the chick flick.
The movie, which grew out of an RTE (PBS) television series has its adherents, and was even “the most successful Irish film of 2013” (surely of few) per the festival program. No less than Universal Pictures is distributing it, and plenty of people were laughing at the screening, but I was not alone in leaving.
The crudity might send many running. Thank God there wasn’t a Q&A after this screening, unlike several others, or it would, no doubt have involved a farting contest. The endless references to bodily functions include many to ejaculation/masturbation (“empty out the potatoes”) and defecation (“have a Jimmy white”). Then there was the tale of fellatio forced on a inmate by a baboon…
The real baboons in co-Writer and Director Mike Cockayne’s mockumentary are the lads. They’re too ineffectual even to be offensive. So, you couldn’t call it misogyny when one, Chris Tordoff as “The Viper,” makes a phone video of himself in his new, camper van in which he vows to bed many women. We know better, even as he introduces the master bedroom as
“the clitoris of the vulva machine”.
The movie is one big in-joke, but it got boring fast. Was the clichéd scene of the lads dragged by the heavies in a nightclub to the inner sanctum where a good-looking leather clad boss wants her money supposed to be pastiche? Or, did they know, it made CSI seem to have depth?
The best thing from this film was the iconic imagery used in a montage within the festival promo: a dope handed a vibrator to thumb a lift; the master of the would be love-mobile handcuffed naked to it at the side of the road by miffed prostitutes; and, best of all, the passenger in a van clad in a latex tricolor bodysuit, with 3D glasses atop his nose, en route to the Ireland-Poland soccer match (cinematography, Rob Arrowsmith).
Other than that, it’s a shame the lads, from the fictitious town of Castletown, County Mayo, ever left home.
A trailer of their fateful decision is here.