After the death of Big Red (Howland), a legendary Texas sports mascot who later became a diminuitive pornstar, his son (Hapka) and widow (Powell) are told that, to get their money, they must stage a 30-day competition between midgets and mascots. So the two teams are assembled, and competing with on midget team is former child star Coleman, who one teammate calls the "Shaquille O'Neal of little people". With 30 events overseen by Big Red's assistant (Kotabe), the competition spirals increasingly out of control.
An opening caption informs us that during the filming a number of people were injured and arrested. But despite the documentary style, this is clearly pure fiction. Essentially, it's just a relentless string of gross-out comedy, including non-stop sex and fart jokes, plus running gags about mascot fetishes, paedophilia and pornography. It's set up to look as politically incorrect as possible, but it's not actually that trangressive.
This is mainly because the performers are all in on the joke. But this gives the movie a genuinely free-wheeling comical tone, mainly because it shows that all of these people are unafraid to laugh at themselves. Hapka and Powell have a certain skill at improv, even with their cartoonish performances. And even the actors who are playing themselves (like Coleman and Pippin) go for broad silliness, creating goofy versions of themselves that aren't remotely believable.
In other words, this is a relentlessly juvenile film that wallows in its trashy vibe. Along the way, some bits are genuinely funny, But the competition events are ludicrous; things like cage fighting, riding a bucking-bull machine, three-legged races and a variety of drinking games are pretty boring. More inventive are rodeo poker, because it's so seriously idiotic, and gator-wrestling, because it's so stupidly staged. The best sequence is the karaoke competition, which gives Glee a deranged run for its money. The worst is the climactic showdown and epilogue, which lamely stir in both sentimentality and moralising.
Run time: 85 mins
In Theaters: Monday 10th January 2011
Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5
IMDB: 5.3 / 10
Director: Ron Carlson
Screenwriter: Terry Mann, Kevin Andounian