Retro Review?: Dude Bro Party Massacre III

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Retro Review:  Dude Bro Party Massacre III

dbm posterIn our Retro Review feature, we like to spotlight old movies that you may have missed.  Give classics and forgotten flicks a little love.  That being said, we’re proud to present our Retro Review of Dude Bro Party Massacre III, a comedic slasher flick from the 80’s…that was released less than two weeks ago.  Huh?

The masters of short attention span comedy over at 5 Second Films (with a lot of help from their fans on Kickstarter) decided to turn one of their longer sketches into a full on movie.  DBPM3 is a love letter to cheesy horror movies and the era of VHS.  According to legend, the Dude Bro Massacre series was a trilogy of slasher movies so foul, President Reagan declared them illegal and destroyed all copies of the films.  Luckily, one teenage fan recorded a late night airing of the final installment on his VCR, complete with commercials and tracking issues, and we now bear witness to the only surviving copy of the infamous series.

While Dude Bro Party Massacre III is a brand spanking new release, that’s not for lack of trying on the part of the crew at 5 Second Films.  I’m sure if they had hit all of their flex goals when funding it, the final pledge level would have been “build a time machine and actually screen this movie via local access cable television in the 1980’s.”  If you’re living in a version of the future where this film actually appeared 30 years ago, then time travel is real and reading this review will cause the time-space continuum to collapse.  Just don’t forget to give it a thumbs up before reality tears itself apart, please.

Dude Bro Party Massacre III (2015)

Our bro-tagonist.
Our bro-tagonist.

In the first two installments of the franchise, ultra-cool frat bro Brock Chirino and his broskies at Delta Bi Theta were hunted by the murderous Motherface, a disfigured dorm matron who sought revenge on the fraternity system that caused her to be burned hideously in a fire at a frat house.  After defeating her twice, Brock is mysteriously murdered and his twin brother, Brent, must infiltrate the Greek system in order to learn the truth behind his death.

Posing as a pledge, Brent helps the misfits of Delta Bi pull of a campus prank so heinous that the entire fraternity is expelled…for a weekend at a spooky old sorority house.  Looking to make the best of the situation, the boys (NO GIRLS ALLOWED!) decide to throw a dude bro party for the ages.  The brews are cold, the bros are hot, and everyone is ready for a rager, including Motherface!  As she begins to pick the dudes off one by one, Brent must race to piece together the mystery of his brother’s killer before it is too late…or they run out of cold ones.

Child of the 80’s

It's...over the top!
It’s…over the top!

DBPM3 is a completely over-the-top collage of 1980’s nostalgia.  From mix tapes and montage sequences, high tops and neon tank tops, and even commercials about adorable pizza eating gremlins, this movie grabs every memory of the era it can and smashes it together for comedic effect.  Borrowing elements from Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, Revenge of the Nerds and Animal House, the film does a spot-on impression of an 80’s cult-classic.  Like most impersonations, it’s both a mockery and a tribute to the subject matter it is mirroring.

This passes the 80's camp check!
This passes the 80’s camp check!

Trying to recreate a cult classic is risky business (he he, 80’s pun!) because often the charm behind those films is entirely accidental.  The gonzo gore, film-school level acting, and sheer insanity of an Evil Dead is like lightning in a bottle, and recent remakes have shown that catching that spark twice is incredibly difficult.  To their credit, 5SF really knows their material.  Odd cuts, stilted acting, rivers of fake blood and cringe-worthy dialogue are assembled so purposefully and meticulously that the Frankenstein’s Monster of assembled movie tropes comes to life and feels, if not completely genuine, at least close enough to the originals to be frightening!

Not Another “Scary Movie”

Anyone order extra red food coloring?  Anyone?
Anyone order extra red food coloring? Anyone?

One pitfall of a lampoon is that in spending so much time satirizing moments from other films, most spoofs forget to make an actual movie themselves.  Dude Bro Massacre escapes this trap wonderfully.  The horror movie at the heart of the film is every bit as devilish and absurd as your favorite spree-killing B-movie slasher flick.  The gore and blood is given lavish detail, while still looking every bit as tacky as you would expect.  In the first 6 minutes, DBPM3 slits more throats, pops more heads, and eviscerates more co-eds than Jason Vorhees managed in 5 sequels!  Motherface is a fantastic villain, complete with an iconic look, an arsenal of improvised murder weapons, and a stand-up comedians routine worth of groan inducing one-liners.  It’s like Arnold Schwarzenegger wrote her dialogue!

That's one sick...burn...
That’s one sick…burn…
Who wants Satan's pizza rolls!?
Who wants Satan’s pizza rolls!?

Adding to the charm of the film is the fact that it blends so many styles together effortlessly.  5 Second Films is a collaborative effort, with each short having a distinct stamp of the creator’s style to them.  This appears in the full length movie, as well.  The established Wes Craven meets John Hughes schtick of the main feature is cut with delightfully ludicrous commercials of differing genres, and a side story involving the popular Officer Sminkle and a sequence involving a town trapped under a lake are given their own feel (and in the case of the lake-bottom, are quite beautiful on a cinematic level.)

The Long and Short of It

You know you want to see what Patton does to that cake!
You know you want to see what Patton does to that cake!

Dude Bro Party Massacre III was a labor of love (and generosity!) and it shows.  The folks over at 5 Second Films are consistently funny and have really come into their own as a group of (short) film makers.  It’s no surprise why comedic titans like Patton Oswalt, Weird Al Yankovic and David Koechner all have collaborated with these guys and gals.  If you’re as nostalgic for grainy VHS and schlocky horror films as we are here at Deluxe Video, you owe it to yourself to check out this modern blast from the past. While it’s available for rental at a great price, I would have to suggest upgrading to the Broterion version:  the amount of extras you get is well worth the extra coin, and having both SD and HD versions of the film is a great option.

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