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Film / Hot Rod

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Hot Rod is The Lonely Island's first venture into feature films, released in 2007 and starring Andy Samberg (as Rod) and Jorma Taccone (as Kevin), with Akiva Schaffer directing.

Wannabe stuntman Rod is desperate to follow in the footsteps of his late father and also win the respect and love of his mean Step-Father, Frank (Ian McShane!), by defeating in him in a fight and proving himself a man. Unfortunately tragedy strikes and Frank is diagnosed with a fatal heart condition. The operation needed is too expensive, so Rod and his gang set out to raise the money by performing the greatest jump he has ever attempted to save Frank's life, so he can finally kick his ass when he's better.


This film provides examples of:

  • Affectionate Parody: Of Coming-Of-Age Stories from the 80s by emphasizing the escapist Manchild aspects of those films to the point of ridiculousness but still playing them beat-for-beat.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Jonathan is seen reading a muscle fitness magazine at one point and seems to care more about his best friend Sullivan than Denise.
  • Amusing Injuries: This movie is very slapstick.
  • Animal Battle Aura: Rod will call upon a random animal spirit whenever he does a jump.
  • Badass Mustache: It's taped on, though.
  • Bastard Boyfriend: Jonathan.
  • Brick Joke: Rod randomly asks Denise who would win a fight between a grilled-cheese sandwich and a taco. She says the taco, but only because it would fight dirty. When Rod "dies" after his big jump, he has an Imagine Spot where a giant taco beats a giant grilled-cheese sandwich after whacking it with a steel chair.
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  • Bring My Brown Pants: Doubles up as a Chekhov's Skill.
  • Calling Your Attacks
    Throws a weak-looking kick with both arms extended and is effortlessly parried by Frank.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Rod asks Denise if there's a tai chi move that can make a man lose control of his bowels. He then goads her into displaying it on him. Rod then uses it on his stepdad in the film's climax.
  • Circle of Shame: When Rod's movie is shown at the theater and he realizes everyone's laughing at how incompetent he looks.
  • Creator Cameo: Akiva Schaffer shows up for a moment as Dave's acid-dealing friend Derek.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Pretty much the whole reason why Rod and Frank fight each other.
  • Did Not Die That Way: Rod's hero was his deceased dad, who he believed was a former stuntman for Evel Knievel, dying when he broke away to do his own stunts but the trick went wrong. Years later his mother admits to him that she had just let Rod believe his fantasies of his dad being a stuntman, and in reality, his dad had choked on a pie.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Rod.
  • Evil Is Petty: Frank would happily die just to spite Rod and make sure he'll never get his approval.
  • Eye Scream: When Dave drops Acid, he gets into a welding accident where a piece of metal flies into his eye. Also doubles as a Major Injury Underreaction.
  • Fanboy: Rod idolizes Evel Knievel.
  • Fake Special Attack: The "Ultimate Punch", which Rod doesn't even use his hands to execute (it's a kick that has both his arms extended forward, and the kick sucks).
  • Finishing Move: After Rod finally beats Frank in the fight at the end of the movie and gets him to admit that he is a man, Rod decides to use the "Crap yourself" move for shits and giggles.
  • Girl Next Door: Denise is a literal version of this trope.
  • Heroic BSoD: Rod. He starts acting like an adult and buying many bottles of alcohol.
  • How Dare You Die on Me!: Rod's reaction to finding out that Frank is dying, because he wants to fight him.
  • Immediate Self-Contradiction: When Rod introduces Denise to his crew, each one of them keeps copying his "My name is [name], and I like to party" line. After a bit of back and forth, Rod finishes with this outburst:
    Rod: Oh my God, shut up! Okay, I'm just gonna do it for you. Denise, this is the crew. Dave's the mechanic, Rico makes the ramps, and Kevin is team manager slash videographer. None of them party, right? Got it? Okay. Let's party."
  • Iron Butt Monkey: Rod survives numerous falls and injuries that would outright kill or permanently cripple most people, and his tenacity is second to none, but virtually nothing goes right for him for a majority of the film.
  • Jerkass:
  • Kick the Dog: After Rod finally gets his stepfather to admit defeat, he throws in a Finishing Move anyways.
  • Lame Rhyme Dodge: A failed attempt by Rod when he suddenly backtracks on his brief moment of having enough nerve to compliment Denise. Instead of replacing it with something benign, he replaces it with something much worse:
    Rod: "You look pretty."
    Denise: "What?"
    Rod: "Uh, I said you look shitty."
  • Manchild
  • Made of Iron: Rod, despite the many accidents he's involved in, never receives any long lasting injuries. Subverted at the end when he "dies"...
  • Man on Fire: Happens to Rod when he's performing for a kid's birthday party to raise money.
  • Mood Whiplash: The Awesome Music that turns into a mass riot.
    Dave: It started off super positive, then it just got crazy.
  • Motive Rant: Whenever Rod has a mic he will start ranting about how much he wants to kill Frank.
  • One-Hour Work Week: Averted with Dave. He has to leave for work while Rod is explaining his plan so Rod and the guys just join him and explain his plan while Dave works.
  • Overly Long Gag:
    • Just how high WAS that hill that Rod tumbled down?
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: The reason why Rod wants to give Frank a new heart, so he can rip it out of him. Yes, he says this a lot.
  • Power Walk: An exaggerated version of this, set to John Farnham's "You're The Voice." Starts off pretty normal with the main cast doing it, and winds up with half the town following them and a mass riot breaking out. With bagpipes blaring in the background.
  • Precision F-Strike: It wouldn't be The Lonely Island without at least one f-bomb. Although in this case, it's not said by one of the dudes, but by a woman who tells Rod, "get the fuck off my porch".
  • Recycled Premise: This movie and Dirty Work share the same central plot: an unsuccessful loser has to raise $50,000 for his cranky ex-boxer father to have a heart transplant.
  • Retro Universe: This movie practically oozes 1980's nostalgia.
  • Rule of Funny: Fueled by it in raw, unfiltered form. There are a bounty of nonsensical, weird, and non-sequitur scenes in the movie but you'll never question them because you'll be laughing too hard.
  • Shout-Out: Rod's dance contains many of the same moves from Footloose.
  • So Bad, It's Good: Rod's in-universe stunts. When he does a movie showing, the audience cheers for all the wrong reasons.
  • Stupid Statement Dance Mix: COOL BEANS!
  • Two Decades Behind: This movie has such a 1980's feel to it that many people believe it to be set in that decade, despite Kevin, for example, carrying around a digital camera and uploading Rod's stunts online.
  • Unfortunate Implications: In-universe. When Rod asks Denise who would win in a fight between a grilled cheese sandwich and a taco, Denise answers that the taco would win because it would fight dirty. Rod comments that Denise's answer is "pretty racist, but correct."
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Rod, to hilariously insane levels.
  • Widget Series: It's probably the shining example of a WHAT.
  • You Say Tomato: Rod tells his crew that his safety word is "hwiskey". His half-brother wants to know why he's pronouncing "whiskey" so weirdly, which leads to Rod pronouncing a string of words starting with 'wh' (and one that just starts with 'w') in the same way until his stepbrother gives up. According to Word of God, this was inspired by a skit on Gang Starr's album Moment of Truth.


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