It's state cops versus the local police in a surprisingly funny and much-smarter-than-it-needs-to-be, ANIMAL HOUSE-style ensemble comedy though it should be stipulated that anyone who's ever had an encounter with real-life state troopers may find its premise somewhat less than hilarious. While not averse to playing mind games with stoned college kids or slathering a naked rookie with shaving cream and shoving him into a locker, the film's troopers Thorny (Jay Chandrasekhar, who also directed), Rabbit (Erik Stolhanske), Mac (Steve Lemme) and Foster (Paul Soter) aren't a mean-spirited bunch. In fact, they're more like low-brow performance artists. The same can't be said for the local Spurbury, Vt., cops, who as a group range from bullies to borderline sadists. The film revolves around the traditional rivalry between the two law-enforcement factions, beginning just as the ante has been upped: Looming state budget cuts mean one of the forces has to go. The troopers must either clean up their act and solve a crime or two, or, more likely, be downsized out of their jobs. The plot quickly becomes amusingly convoluted as dead bodies pile up, major stashes of pot get smuggled through town, and Foster, the nicest of the troopers, manages to romance one of the Spurbury cops, Officer Ursula Hanson (Marisa Coughlan). The film was written by the Broken Lizard comedy troupe (a somewhat unfortunate moniker), whose members also play the titular troopers; fortunately they're all very funny, in particular Lemme, who could easily be David Arquette's slightly older and even more unhinged brother. Glowering UK character actor Brian Cox, usually cast as a heavy by virtue of his imposingly sinister physical presence, plays their boss, Captain John O'Hagan, and reveals a surprisingly deft comic presence he nearly steals just about every scene he's in. Fans of cheesy '70s TV shows will also be pleased by Wonder Woman Lynda Carter's brief cameo appearance as the governor of Vermont.
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- Released: 2002
- Rating: R
- Review: It's state cops versus the local police in a surprisingly funny and much-smarter-than-it-needs-to-be, ANIMAL HOUSE-style ensemble comedy though it should be stipulated that anyone who's ever had an encounter with real-life state troopers may find it… (more)