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Film / Beerfest

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Beerfest is a 2006 film from comedy troupe Broken Lizard. It's probably best described as an Affectionate Parody of sports movies that uses cultural and National Stereotypes to a ridiculous extent.

The plot of the movie revolves around brothers Jan and Todd Wolfhouse, whose German grandfather has just passed away. Charged with the task of bringing his ashes to the "family resting place" in Munich during Oktoberfest, they end up discovering Beerfest, a secret underground drinking competition. Beerfest is presided over by Baron Wolfgang von Wolfhausen, braumeister of the Von Wolfhausen brewery. He is furious at Jan and Todd's late grandfather for purportedly stealing his family's beer recipe, "the greatest in all the world," calling him a "thieving stable boy" and "bastard son of a whore." Americans are banned from Beerfest, and as Jan and Todd try to state their right to be there, they are handily beaten in an impromptu speed chug competition by the German team. After suffering humiliation at the hands of the von Wolfhausens, they return home with the intent to return to Beerfest with the first American team—and kick the Germans' asses.

Provides Examples Of:

  • The Ace: The German team when it comes to drinking. And Gil, Landfill's twin brother and replacement.
  • Actor Allusion: Baron Wolfgang von Wolfhausen commanding a submarine. And saying he had a bad experience onboard once.
  • The Alcoholic: Virtually everybody in this movie. The film even opens with a disclaimer warning the viewer not to attempt to drink like the characters.
    "...If you attempt to drink the amount of beer the characters do in this film, YOU WILL DIE."
  • All Germans Are Nazis: Surprisingly averted, although Fink (who is Jewish) is convinced to join the drinking team after hearing that their biggest rivals will be the Germans.
    • The Germans do briefly mock Fink's yarmulke towards the climax, which causes him to develop "The Eye of the Jew" and helps him lead Team USA to victory.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The Disaster Dominoes that Jan and Todd trigger at Oktoberfest turns the entire crowd against them when a little boy on stage (who just happens to be Baron von Wolfhausen's grandson) is injured and started crying.
  • Artistic License – Geography: Although each country is represented at Beerfest by only a single team, Scotland has its own team despite being part of the United Kingdom. Partly justified in that this is the case for several real life sports (football, rugby, etc), but there is also a British team at Beerfest (identified as such by the Union Jacks on their outfits), which is never the case when the constituent parts of the United Kingdom get to play as themselves, as is clearly the case here; such a team should be the England team and would use the English flag (St. George's cross) and not the Union Jack.
  • Avengers Assemble: Putting the American team together.
  • Backup Twin: Played for Laughs. When Phil "Landfill" is assassinated, his identical twin brother Gil shows up to the funeral, and ends up getting Landfill's nickname, his spot on the team...and even his wife. And it turns out Phil already told Gil everything about the other team members, so he fills out the hole Phil left pretty effortlessly. It is even lampshaded by the other team members who notice that it is as if Phil hadn't died in the first place.
  • Bait-and-Switch: The plans for the Wolfhausen recipe are stolen by Cherry, but it turns out that she merely stole a prototypical recipe for "a new low-carb strawberry ale. It's... okay."
  • Berserk Button: A badly timed insult from the German team during the final event taps some epic "Jew Rage".
    • "I happen to have MARRIED that plastic fuck doll!"
    • Bringing up Landfill's previous job at the brewery causes an immediate shift in his mood.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: The man Jan is gambling over quarters with in the beginning of the movie and gets his men to hold him down to beat the shit out of Jan? He's the minister who is residing over Johann's funeral.
  • Big Game: Beerfest itself.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Cherry.
  • Bilingual Bonus: There's several, though Das Boot is a subversion, as it actually means "The Boat." Since Jürgen Prochnow is the Baron, however, it's obviously a Stealth Pun on his signature role.
  • The Brute: Hammacher and Schlemmer, the two monstrously large von Wolfhausen brothers, who spend much of the film bullying the main characters.
  • Butt-Monkey: Fink.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Johann Wolfhouse's beloved doll Popo, which turns out to be the hiding place for the von Wolfhausen beer recipe.
  • Congruent Memory: Fink's theory of "Drunken Recall," which is used on Todd (by having him chug an entire bottle of Goldschläger generic gold-flecked liqueur) so that they can find the entrance to Beerfest.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Cherry pushes Landfill into a vat of beer, where he ultimately drowns. Considering who the character is and that he dies while trying to drink his way out, it arguably crosses over with Great Way to Go.
  • Culture Equals Costume: Every single team at Beerfest. The German team wear lederhosen, the English team dress as Football Hooligans, the Irish team wear all-green outfits, the Mexican team dress like ranch hands, the Canadian team wear hockey uniforms, the Swedesh team is made up entirely of hot blonde women wearing skimpy ski vests, the Scottish team wear kilts and what is likely the Japanese team are all dressed in black suits that mark them, along with a member's missing fingers, as Yakuza.
    • Fink during the course of the entire film (with his ever-changing wardrobe of yarmulkes).
  • David Versus Goliath
  • Denying the Dead Parent's Sins: Jan and Todd get pissed at the Germans for saying their grandfather stole a recipe for the greatest beer in the world. Not only did he indeed steal it, but he was actually the rightful heir, which means so are they.
  • Depraved Homosexual: The gay prostitute who hangs out with Barry and aggressively hits on Fink.
  • Deus ex Machina: Hilariously parodied. After Landfill is untimely murdered, the team learns that he just happens to have an identical twin brother who is better than him at everything, including drinking and sex. He even insists on still being called "Landfill" in order to honor his brother's legacy.
  • Disaster Dominoes: Jan and Todd's initial arrival to Oktoberfest.
  • Don't Try This at Home: The start of the movie warns of over-drinking and not to recreate what the actors are doing. Indeed, most of the "beer" in the movie was non-alcholic.
  • Double Entendre: GamGam gets a lot of these after Wolfgang tells the boys she was a whore.
  • The Dragon: Cherry is this to the Germans.
  • Drunken Master: Barry is much better at drinking games when drunk.
  • Eagleland: So, so much.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Fink discovers the secret to beating the Boot at a bathroom urinal.
  • Fallen-on-Hard-Times Job: Landfill runs a carnival booth now. And Barry? "It's $10 for a BJ, $12 for an HJ, $15 for a ZJ..."
  • Fanservice Extra: At Oktoberfest when a bar fight causes a guy to slip and grab onto the tube top of the nearest girl. Newly stripped girl slips herself, grabs onto the tops of two other girls, and strips them. And then those two girls slip, and pull down the tops of the three girls behind them. A chain reaction of 6 uncredited topless blonde Fanservice Extras that has the men at Oktoberfest—as well as the male audience—cheering at each stage. Pure Fanservice all the way.
  • Freestate Amsterdam
  • Homage Shot: This shot to this one from Das Boot.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: GamGam is a very sweet old lady who was a prostitute in her youth.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Landfill, who is said to have converted to Islam while in jail, regularly imbibes alcohol and ingests pork products. Maybe he's just not that devout.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: "We're not that drunk."
  • I Never
  • I Was Quite a Looker: GamGam, who was a beautiful young Bavarian whore.
  • Jewish and Nerdy: Fink down to a T.
  • Karma Houdini: The Baron has Cherry executed because she failed him, yet his only comeuppance is that his team loses the tournament.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Cherry causes Landfill's death, gloats about it to his twin brother, making them lose on the American team lose the Boot challenge, and tries to steal the beer recipe from them. When the Americans challenge the Germans to play double or nothing for the recipe they believe they already have it only for Fink that it is the wrong recipe Cherry stole. The Baron then has Cherry executed for it.
  • Miracle Rally
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Fink and the monkey-frogs.
  • Noodle Incident: A lot of them, including the Z-job (if you have to ask, you can't afford it) and Landfill's termination from his job at the brewery.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: When Barry wakes up in the field. Naked. With blood on his lips. Next to an eviscerated deer.
  • Oktoberfest
  • Opposing Sports Team: The Germans.
  • Plot Hole: Never during any of the Das Boot challenges are the Germans seen having to turn the boot at the right moment.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: "Feel that pullin' you down? That's the yeast, baby. It's like quicksand. Say goodbye!" - Cherry to Landfill after pushing him into a vat of beer.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The American team. Oh so much.
    • To give you an idea, one of their members is a homeless male prostitute.
  • Sequel Hook: Willie Nelson invites the guys to be his teammates at "Pot Fest".
  • Serious Business: Those who don't obey the rules of Beerfest tend to get shot.
  • Shoot the Messenger: Upon learning that the Americans know the recipe to their beer, Baron von Wolfhausen orders the delivery boy to be disposed of immediately. The grandsons shove hoses down his throat, in his ears, and up his nose, and tap the keg.
    Messenger: No, no, no! What about "don't shoot the messenger", right?
  • Shout-Out:
    • Baron von Wolfhausen had a bad experience on a U-Boat once.
    • Not to mention the "Das Boot" competition itself.
    • There are also a number of veiled or not-so-veiled references to lines from Super Troopers, usually delivered by the same actor. The most obvious is probably Landfill asking for "six Schnitzes."
      • The German techno music from Super Troopers is heard during the scene where the Germans are training.
    • The "You do not talk about Beerfest" rule is also a shout-out to Fight Club.
    • The Swedish team at Beerfest is made up entirely of attractive blonde women in bikinis. This is a reference to a series of Old Milwaukee beer commercials from the late-1980s and early-1990s that featured the "Swedish Bikini Team."
  • Slobs vs. Snobs: The American team is nothing but a team of middle class and blue collar friends who like to drink, compared to the elitist and arrogant German team who have Olympic-style training regimens.
  • Smug Snake: The Germans.
  • Stealth Pun: Schnitzengiggle, the Wolfhouses' restaurant and beer.
  • A Tankard of Moose Urine: The American team desensitizes their taste buds via drinking actual ram's piss.
  • Tandem Parasite: After the "strikeout" scene, only three of five passengers on a tandem bike are pedaling. That Todd is wearing a wedding gown while sitting in the rear seat just adds to the hilarity.
  • Tar and Feathers: Cloris Leachman's character and her son are tarred and feathered in turn of the century Germany.
  • Theme Naming: Hammacher and Schlemmer, named after a Sharper Image-type store that deals in high-end gadgetry.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Fink near the end.
  • Training from Hell: Par for the course for the Germans, but then self-inflicted by the new Team USA. How intense could it be? Both teams actually drank ram's piss.
    Barry Badrinath: (after drinking Ram's piss) "Oh man, that's the most disgusting thing I've ever drank."
    Landfill: "I doubt that very much, playboy!"
  • Tranquil Fury: "The Eye of the Jew."
  • TV Genius: Fink, who goes so far as to develop a scientific approach to drinking.
    • All There in the Manual: The segment explaining "Fink's Position," used by all of the American team during the final line chug, didn't make it into the final cut of the film. It's included as a deleted scene on the DVD, however.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Landfill, despite being an overweight competitive eater, has a very attractive blonde wife.
  • Underdogs Never Lose
  • The Unintelligible: The English team (not British, as there's a separate Scottish team) is painted this way, with their use of Cockney rhyming slang. If you actually know Cockney, however, you can understand them perfectly.
  • Wild Teen Party: The American team attends one of these to brush up on their drinking game skills.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: The American team pulls one of these at the end of the film, letting the Germans think that they're too drunk to continue until they reveal the bluff and prove that they're not ''that'' drunk.
  • You Have Failed Me: The Baron has Cherry executed when it's revealed that she stole the wrong beer recipe.