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Jason 'Wee Man' Acuña,
Jarppi "Daredevil", Jukka "Showman", Jarno "Mastermind", HP "Bonebreaker" and Britney, their beloved giant pig, are a group of childhood best friends who over the years have solidified their bonds between each other despite all the broken bones, trips to the hospital and near death experiences. From perilous car and motorcycle jumps to indoor bonfires, The Dudesons always manage to turn the mundane realities of everyday life into laughter and occasional pain - where else could you see a human dartboard or a baseball bat wake up call to the balls? The Dudesons Movie is a story of friendship combined with madness. Written by
Finnish premiere of the film was on a drive-in theater. See more »
If you hear something that we said but you didn't understand, we were just cursing in Finnish. The most common words are "saatana" and "perkele". Saatana, well it means 'Satan' and Perkele is... the great grandfather of Satan!
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The success of the American reality-TV comedy show Jackass has inspired many followers, but they were never the only ones fascinated with dangerous stunts and skits: a quartet of friends from Seinäjoki, Finland had started filming similar antics in the 1990s and finally got their own show on the legendary cult TV channel MoonTV almost simultaneously with Jackass' first airings in the US. The Dudesons' popularity grew quickly, as did their budget and the scale of their stunts. Ultimately it was time to open up to foreign audiences as well: the speaking language was switched to English and a full length movie was produced to support the international series, the rights of which have subsequently been sold to more countries than any other Finnish show ever, apart from the extreme traveling show Madventures.
The main point of the movie is introducing the Dudesons to international audiences. They are presented as "four friends from the Arctic Circle" (even though they're not really from up North) and each member is given a personality in numerous interviews with the guys: Jarppi is the "daredevil", Jukka the "showman", Jarno the "brains" and HP the "bonebreaker". The constant bratty laughter regardless of what happens and various nasty injuries, the trademark elements of the shows, are all there and a lot of the ideas and footage have been directly recycled from their earlier shows, so old fans of the crew should feel at home despite the new language.
This type of cinema is only as funny as the stunts performed, but luckily the Dudesons manage to pull their tricks off rather naturally without coming across as forced or awkward. The skits are more focused on the spectacular, dangerous type of things, often involving car crashes and fire, as opposed to the more gross-out kind of humour of Jackass and their British colleagues Dirty Sanchez (still, that is not to say the Dudesons wouldn't love poop jokes...). It's difficult to say if every scene is completely unscripted or not ("making Jarno mad" looks like it's been set up, as does the van rolling downhill) or if the editing makes certain situations seem more serious and dangerous than they really were, but the more small-scale skits do look very authentic. The scenes with the guys' angry neighbour "Mr. Hitler" are the funniest parts and have been saved for the last, but earlier pranks on unsuspecting outsiders hit home as well, like the confrontation with disgruntled Norwegian cabin owners after a very messy indoors fire extinguisher battle. Some skits are obviously not as funny, but no scenes ever last long enough to get boring and the brisk pacing accompanied by punk rock and heavy metal music keeps the film going with few stale moments.
As mentioned in the paragraph above, the Dudesons rely more on spectacle than Jackass, but the other main point of interest about them are their personal charisma and close friendship that raise them above the loose American gang with more members but also more cartoonish personalities. Also, I think the setting in the Finnish countryside is more unique than the generic urban landscapes of the other shows. The changing seasons with altering amounts of natural light and temperatures provide a good-looking hillbilly atmosphere for the Dudeson life, as does the guys' adorable pet pig Britney, even if the international approach has reduced the visibility of their specifically Ostrobothnian identity. In spite of the differences, the crew does acknowledge their similarity to Jackass and frequently collaborate with them, as shown by the cameos of Bam Margera and his family during the Dudesons' trip to America.
This kind of humour is definitely love-it-or-hate-it material; it never pretends to be more than overage children having idiotic dangerous fun. At less than 80 minutes it is also about as long as this kind of movie can be without getting tiresome. The obvious folks it can be recommended to are fans of the diverse Jackass and the nasty Dirty Sanchez, but the viewer's ultimate preference between the crews depends mostly on personal tastes. As for myself, I can say I like the Dudesons best, thanks to their natural aura of lovability and the cozy Finnishness of their accents and rural surroundings. For those looking for cringe-inducing injuries and self-deprecating antics, The Dudesons Movie is a great way of having a good time; others should just stay away from it there are very few "cinematic qualities" to be found, but since the movie never claims to have any, it would not feel entirely worthwhile to criticize it for lack of character development or societal message.
P.S. Don't miss the short post-credit scene; it is really something to make even the most hardened torture porn horror fans flinch.
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