[box cover]

Super Troopers

Though known to general public for their recent film break in 2002's Super Troopers, the comic troop Broken Lizard was formed at Colgate University in 1989, where the five-man ensemble (comprising Jay Chandrasekhar, Kevin Heffernan, Steve Lemme, Paul Soter, and Erik Stolhanske) went to school. They toured and worked on their own films, including the wonderfully titled short The Tinfoil Monkey Agenda in 1994 and Puddle Cruiser in 1996. Super Troopers gave them their break by making a big impression at Sundance in 2001 — but don't think the film is a soul-searching comedy of errors just because of its arty pedigree. No, the only thing Super Troopers has in common with the early works of Todd Solondz or Todd Haines is a low budget. Super Troopers is a classic snobs vs. slobs comedy story, the type of which that has worked since the days of yore, (or at least since the Caddyshack and Police Academy movies). The Lizards play state troopers, working under the guidance of their Captain O'Hagan (played by Brian Cox, who is known for playing heavies but here shows a gift for comedy). The troopers spend their days busting speeders and playing jokes on each other and their suspects, but trouble looms for their Vermont-based jobs thanks to budget cuts, and the local Spurbury cops (lead by Daniel Von Bargen) are riding the guys over their imminent closure. But when the troopers stumble on a murder scene and a truck loaded with marijuana, they search for the conspirators via a single clue: a cheap cartoon character named Johnny Chimpo, which is embossed on the side of weed bushels and a tattoo on the dead girl. Obviously intended for the open-minded college crowd (and there are more than a couple of pot jokes) but devoid of excessive potty humor, Super Troopers is slight but well written — and filled with the kind of gags that sometimes really hit when thinking about the movie later. It's the sort of steadily amusing picture that will probably develop a cult following on video. Fox's DVD release presents Super Troopers in anamorphic widescreen (1.85:1) and Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. Extras include two Lizard audio commentaries, one by director Chandrasekhar and Stolhanske, and the other with Heffernan, Lemme, and Soter; extended and deleted scenes, as well as outtakes, all with two optional commentaries; trailers for this and Kung Pow; a featurette on the movie; and a spot on the tour bus used to promote the film. Keep-case.

Back to Quick Reviews Index: [A-F] [G-L] [M-R] [S-Z]

Back to Main Page