Fantasia 2018 Review: HEAVY TRIP is a Hilarious Look at Brutal Music
From directors Jukka Vidgren and Juuso Laatio, the comedy Heavy Trip recently played a sold-out screening at Fantasia 2018. The Finland-Norway production centers on Turo, a sensitive heavy metal frontman who's got stage fright but still wants to rule the music festival circuit with his band.
The other members of this band, who've practiced for over a decade but have only just settled on the name Impaled Rektum, provide plenty of comedic character quirks as they journey from making a demo tape to playing the hottest heavy metal festival in Norway.
Hilarity ensues as Turo must endure a skevy rival and local lounge singer as the rumors about Impaled Recktum playing the festival circulate. As if that's not bad enough, the father of Turo's love interest is the local police chief who adore the gross dude and hates Turo on sight, as do lots of the small town residents who make fun of Turo's long hair and the way he and his bandmates dress.
As if that's not bad enough, Turo holds down a challenging job as an orderly at an institution with rowdy patients, and his close friend, drummer, and bandmate Jynnky passes away after they manage to buy a beaten old van from the lounge singer with a particularly brutal history.
Any of this would be plenty to make someone give up on their dreams, but the band pulls through --- after obstacles that seem to chase them like the giant bolder menacing Indy in Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom.
However, the band doesn't give up, and hilarity ensues as they steal the lounge singer's van (theirs is confiscated by the police chief) and dig up the coffin of good old Jynnky. With the coffin strapped to the roof, they speed out to Norway. Not only are they chased by the police, but the chief calls the Norwegian border patrol to let them know that terrorists are on the way. At the same time, a bachelor's party dressed as sultans are partying and driving to the border, and you can guess how that goes.
But all is not lost! After it seems that the band is trapped, they come across Viking reenactors that assist them in getting to their destination via their Viking ship! Even Jynnky in the coffin makes it, and if you've never seen a coffin getting the crowd surfing treatment, now's your chance with Heavy Trip.
The film is a little silly, yes, but it has heart. It follows the predictable beats of most major comedies, but is quite enjoyable nonetheless --- especially if love it when people beaten down by life don't give up on their dreams after being told "no" again and again. Heavy Trip is tons of fun, and you don't need to be a heavy metal fan to enjoy it, but it does help.
The Fantasia crowd really loved it, clapping at all the right places, and cheering at times, too. It's an entertaining hour-and-a-half that's quite enjoyable, and would make for a great double bill with Jason Lei Howden's Deathgasm. Check out the trailer below.