Five years ago, ‘A Few Best Men’ arrived on screens to howls of outrage. Directed by ‘Adventures of Priscilla: Queen of the Desert’ helmer Stephan Elliot, it offered a myriad of puerile toilet humour for critics to be appalled by. The bad publicity generated helped it make big box office dollars as curious viewers wondered what the fuss was about. Now comes the sequel ‘A Few Less Men’. Elliot has dropped out of directing duties but this follow-up is still as juvenile as ever and sure to furrow even further movie critics’ brows.
David (Xavier Samuel), Tom (Kris Marshall) and Graham (Kevin Bishop) are life-long best friends. When a friend dies after they attend a wedding, they fly home to give his body to his family. Their plane crash-lands into the harsh outback, leaving the trio to think of ways to carry their deceased friend home. With lost clothes, wayward animals and peculiar people blocking their path, the lads despair at ever arriving at their destination as events conspire against them.
‘A Few Less Men’ is the type of production movie critics like to slam. Its plot is flimsy, its execution is terrible and the acting mostly dire. But it wasn’t made for critics. It was made as a potential money-making franchise. Crudity and innuendo have always been popular with general audiences with the 70’s ‘Carry On’-style humour fully on display. The script goes from one outlandish situation to another, full of smutty laughs, truly awful dialogue and embarrassed performers.
The only saving grace is the cinematography which captures the Australian landscape very well. ‘A Few Less Men’ is a gorgeous looking movie, which makes it more tragic that so much money was wasted on a mediocre screenplay. Sophisticated laughs seem old-hat in films these days, where it’s easier to indulge in gutter humour than sophisticated wit. Xavier Samuel equips himself with some dignity in his role, providing some sense of sanity in an insanely dire movie.
‘A Few Less Men’ presents a grotesque collage of lavatory humour that would make the cast of ‘Are You Being Served?’ blush. As usual, it will be a big hit based on its notoriety with the furrowed brow of this movie critic dug deeper than the bottom of the barrel this one scrapes.
Rating out of 10: 2