Weirdsville Allan Moyle

Weirdsville Allan Moyle
Intended as a light-hearted Canadian take on Trainspotting, Weirdsville bears greater resemblance to an irreverence-enhanced Canuck version of Cheech and Chong. After firmly setting the tone with an opening shot of a rat struggling against golden death in a toilet bowl, director Allan Moyle (Empire Records, Pump Up the Volume) plays with filters, focus and editing to establish a drug-addled perspective during the credits.

Weirdsville’s struggling rats are likeable numb wits Dexter and Royce (Scott Speedman and Wes Bentley). When the scruffy haze heads take on dealing duties to pay off a debt to their drug dealer Omar, Royce succumbs to his proclivity towards indulgence with a bender that leaves him with the apparently lifeless body of his sort of girlfriend Mattie (Tayrn Manning), who deals in "business dates.”

Being a numbskull setting up a wacky stoner capper, Royce, without checking for a pulse, calls Dexter to help him bury Mattie’s body in the basement of an old movie theatre. And who else would have use for an abandoned movie theatre other than a group of geeky Satanists performing blood rites? Such logic is par for the course, with the unfortunate stoner buddies getting enveloped in an increasingly nuttier and hallucinatory affair.

The laughs gain potency as the absurdity is dialled up. A badass mall guard midget leads a pack of Medieval Times obsessed munchkins in an assault against the Satanists; the affable Eastern drug dealer threatens face-crushing by curling stone; and the drug intake escalates. Unfortunately, any humour generated still feels more like forced shock value wackiness rather than calculated satire.

The ensemble cast are quite talented; Bentley in particular, playing against type, charms as misguided dullard Royce. Try as they might though, the crew can’t elevate the script above the lazy stoner hijinks it’s built upon. (Equinoxe)