FUBAR

I had known about FUBAR for a long, long time, almost 5 years before I watched this movie a few weeks back.¬† First of all, for those who don’t know, is a military term which is short for ¬†“fucked up beyond all/any recognition/repair/reason/redemption”. Pick & choose the R according to the situation & individuals. The movie is a mockumentary about the headbanger lifestyle and focuses on two lifelong friends who are living out their lives, constantly drinking¬†beer and not really doing much in life. The Michael Dowse directed film was a Sundance film festival entry and achieved a cult status in North America.

The movie is shot & based near Calgary, Canada which is where the protagonists & objects of the mockumentary live. The lead characters Terry & Dean are partly based on a comedy routine performed by¬†David Lawrence¬†and¬†Paul Spence¬†that they developed based on the head-banger subculture. Terry & Dean grew up together and spend all of their free time listening to their favourite rock & metal bands and drinking beer. They usually drink beers by making a hole on the side of the can and drinking it in one shot as it pours out (shotgunning is the term, I guess) and prefer a brand called Molson’s Old Style Pilsner which is also known as ‘Saskatchewan Champagne’.

The duo are approached by director Farrel to be the subjects of a documentary, although the duo themselves don’t really understand why they were chosen. Dean, who is an unemployed musician having trouble growing facial hair, and Terry, a the dock loader,¬† agree to let Farrel film their lives. Terry has a ex-girlfriend with whom he also has a baby girl. Terry instead lives with Dean living irresponsibility through gratuitous scenes of shotgunning beers, vandalism, punching each other and wrestling furniture scattered with food cartons. When Terry and Dean meet up with their recently married friend Troy, they try to get him to come over later for a party. Troy (known as Tron in his headbanging days) promises he will, but his wife forbids him later on the grounds that he has to be responsible. Farrel contrasts Troy and his old friends by showing Terry and Dean getting drunk and insulting their friend when he doesn’t show up.

Later Dean informs us that Terry has testicular cancer and he has to consult with Dr. Lim (who is Dowse’s real doctor) after pressure from his ex-girlfriend. After the biopsy, Terry learns they will have to remove one of his testicles, and decides to have a final wild weekend before going under the knife. With his best friend Dean, Terry takes Farrel & his crew on a camping trip in a car with lots of beer & a couple lawn chairs. After Farrell offers to pay for a hotel the next night as he had gotten wasted and tried to fight the duo. At the hotel they meet up with many other real Canadian metalheads who fight for the camera. The next day Farrel dies when he is dared to jump into a river and hits his head on a rock. This seems to sober up Terry in particular.

Terry undergoes the surgery and later has chemo treatment shaving his head bald before doing so. He scares Dean at the end by saying that he doesn’t have much to live and Dean believes him for a few minutes before realizing that his friend is just pulling his leg. Some of the more hilarious scenes involve Dean’s poem “Woman is a Danger Cat,” Terry’s speech about bowling alley cuisine, and of course all the drunken shenanigans, which includes running away after demolishing a bus shelter with an oil drum. The soundtrack is also awesome. I’ll give the movie an 8 out of 10!

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