Published Sep 24, 2009As an epilogue to Showtime's long running and much loved Trailer Park Boys series, Countdown to Liquor Day flounders. Picking up two years after the jailing of Ricky (Rob Wells), Julian (Jean Paul Tremblay) and Bubbles (Mike Smith) that ended last year's hour-long series finale, the boys' second feature film outing ― and their first to remain in continuity with the TV series ― has Sunnyvale Trailer Park's usual suspects, and co-writer/director Mike Clattenburg, working at the furthest reaches of their abilities.
The Trailer Park Boys series was always at its best when the gang were cooking up some "get rich quick" scheme that formed a given season's narrative arc, be it the second season's "Freedom 35" plan or the seventh season plot to smuggle dope across the border in model trains. Countdown to Liquor Day has each of its major players pursuing their own petty criminal enterprise: Julian starts operating a semi-legit auto shop out of his trailer; Bubbles attempts to liberate his seized kitties from the SPCA; and Ricky works on selling pot-growing equipment. With so many crooks in the kitchen, Countdown ends up a sloppy heap of half-baked plans.
The boys again butt heads with the drunk-cum-sober-cum-drunk-again trailer park supervisor Jim Lahey (John Dunsworth), who here forgoes his liquor-fuelled conniving and trademark "shit talk" in favour of running around Halifax half-naked like some boozed-up buffoon. While adapting small screen material for the big screen requires amplifying what made the TV series work, Countdown to Liquor Day hits the show's comedic notes too ham fistedly.
Indebted to a series renowned for nimbly deploying four-letter words at record speeds, there's no reason Countdown to Liquor Day should be playing singular f-bombs for laughs. Likewise, there's no place in Trailer Park Boys for a dedicated pot-smoking scene ― the film should merely exist in a judgement-clouding, bleary-eyed haze.
As a fan of the series it pains me to say so but after seven seasons and two films the Trailer Park Boys have worn out their welcome. (Alliance)