Club Dread

To this day, as the story goes, Machete Phil stalks the jungle beckoning “Where’s my penis?”

“Super Troopers” stands as one of the most outlandish law enforcement spoofs of all time, ranking up there with such titles as “Police Academy,” “Armed and Dangerous” and “The Keystone Kops.” Three years after its successful debut in “Super Troopers,” the Broken Lizard comedy troupe is back and as hilarious as ever.

In “Club Dread,” the flippant ensemble tackles the formulaic contemporary horror genre. One by one, a masquerading assailant hacks down undutiful employees at a Costa Rican resort called Paradise Island. The killer employs a machete as his/her weapon of choice and saunters along at a leisurely pace when in pursuit of a naughty counselor (i.e. Jason Voorhees). What sets this villain apart is his/her facial guise. Instead of a William Shatner mask spray-painted white as seen in “Halloween” or a circa 1965 goalie mask from “Friday the 13th,” this blood-thirsty maniac dons a ritualistic tribal mask.

By the light of a campfire, we are told by counselor Dave that some years ago, an adolescent male named Phillip was lead astray by fellow staffers and made an inadvertent necrophiliac. He lost his nerve and butchered in cold blood all those within his eye line. He then cleaved off his penis and vanished into the woods. To this day, as the story goes, Machete Phil stalks the jungle beckoning “Where’s my penis?”

Is Machete Phil the homicidal lunatic on the prowl, or is it one of Paradise Island’s very own staff members? Could it be Lars, the pleasantly plump masseuse (Rodney Farva from “Super Troopers”)” Juan, the Latino studmuffin with an appetite for bestiality” or perhaps even the nimble, tantalizingly hot ‘ yet cuckoo ‘ Penelope? Better still, is it beyond doubt to suspect the hideaway’s owner, Coconut Pete, a brain-dead ’70s rock icon? After all, the killer’s code of slaughter does strictly abide by one of his most popular songs.

“Club Dread” is “Exit to Eden,” only tack on more hysterical flair along with a manipulative psychopath and lose the always atrocious Rosie O’Donnell. Comical burn-out Dan Aykroyd is replaced by up-and-coming writer/director/actor Jay Chandrasekhar. Chandrasekhar, who played “Thorny” Ramathorn in “Super Troopers,” plays Putman, a British-accented tennis instructor with a Middle-Eastern pedigree. Pour on porous amounts of nudity, sex and asinine dialogue and, voilá, you have yourself Chuckle 9.0 Optimized.

The true reasoning for my venture to view “Club Dread” was process of elimination. The other two films opening this past weekend were “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” and “Twisted.” An individual could purchase me an albino rhino complete with a camel-hair saddle and a manual on rhino-back riding and I still would have refused to see “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.” The other possibility, “Twisted,” looked appealing up until, while flipping channels, I witnessed Samuel L. Jackson frantically promoting the film on MTV. Thanks, but no thanks.

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