A couple of months back I had a business trip to Vancouver that required me to return to Toronto on the same day. The ol' east coast/west coast/east coast day isn't a fun day of travel. After my day in Vancouver, I was deposited at the airport about three and a half hours before my flight so I decided to grab a book to help me pass the time. I stumbled upon the book I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell by Tucker Max and was suitably intrigued by the blurb on the book. To paraphrase, Max essentially acknowledges that he's an asshole, and a drunk, and that he lives his life in an entirely selfish manner, says whatever the hell he wants devotes much of his time to the bedding an endless stream of bimbos. The book has made the New York Times Best Seller list three years in a row, and I thought to myself, "Well, I'm an asshole, so perhaps I will like this."
Now, I should point out that I didn't have a clue who Tucker Max was when I stumbled upon his book. I've subsequently discovered that this book is a collection of his allegedly autobiographical blog entries, that Max says has had millions of hits since its launch in 2002. His countless stories of drunken debauchery and (suspicious) sexual indiscretions made him a celebrated internet figure and the books success has now elevated Max - according to him, of course - to celebrity status.
What confuses me, however, is why he is successful at all. The book is an utter piece of shit. Everybody knew that guy in high school who would shamelessly embellish his stories to the level that would require having been kicked in the head by a donkey in order for you to believe. That is Tucker Max. And like a 17 year old boy, the things he thinks are "cool" are things like drinking sooooooooo much beer and totally scoring the hottest chick and telling people how lame they are compared to him. This happens in story after story ad nauseum. You can almost picture him high-fiving an endless stream of frat-boy assholes then chugging a beer at the completion of each tall tale.
Is it just me or is a 33 year old man that tells stories that include things like "then I had six shots in the next ten minutes and got 'Tucker Max Drunk'" kind of sad? I mean, not only does he have an official autobiographical name for when he gets really loaded, but he has actually thinks it's cool, at age 33, to pound six shots in ten minutes. While a lot of his sophomoric adventures, are, in the end, painfully lame, and in a lot of cases similar to things that pretty much any guy did in high school the really painful thing about his writing is that it's simply not nearly as funny as he seems to think it is. A 'comedic' story by someone who's not particularly funny becomes a bit of a chore, and even sadder is that Max clearly thinks he's the smartest guy in the room. What you're left with, as a reader, is the pathetic ramblings of an alcoholic who thinks he's smart and funny while everything he does and writes seems to contradict that. This is the recipe for disaster, not entertainment.
After landing and doing some research on Tucker Max, I learned, to my disbelief, that his book was being made into a movie. Max himself co-scripted and produced the film, also titled I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell with the legendary Bob Gosse attached to direct. If you don't know who Gosse is, join the club. The film focuses on one of the books many stories, and is essentially a guys road trip 'lets get laid' story. How original! If it was titled American Pie Presents: I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell it wouldn't come as a surprise to anybody. In fact, if it was titled National Lampoon's Boners, Booze & Barf and starred Corey Feldman and Paulie Shore it would, in no way, reflect poorly on the source material. It just screams "straight-to-DVD." The trailer for this movie was so bad I actually felt sorry for Max, and I'm about as big a fan of him as I am of prison rape, so that says a lot about how truly amateurish and lousy this trailer really is. In fact, it's so bad that I won't post the trailer here as a favour to anyone reading this. Max, who's a massive fan of himself, clearly didn't realize what a stink-bomb he had on his hands back in June when he was quoted as saying "Anything The Hangover can do at the box office we can beat. Easily."
Sorry, what was that? The Hangover, of course, is now the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time with $273,863,000 and counting in box office receipts. Max's prediction was idiotic in June but now it's gone from funny to just plain sad. I was awaiting the release of the his movie just to see what kind of numbers it put up in order to see exactly how moronic Max would look, so I decided to look his film and find out when it was getting released.
I was amazed - and delighted - to find out that the film has already been released! The film hit theatres (or was it theatre? I literally heard nothing about this movie coming out) on September 25th and has earned an impressive 24% fresh rating at rottentomatoes.com. The flick ranked 25th at the box office its opening weekend. The Hangover, which opened on June 7th and is still hanging around in handful of theatres, was in 20th place. Yes, the film that Tucker Max claimed he could "easily" beat at the box office actually finished higher then his film despite already being in theatres two and half months. Such a shame to see a privileged, misogynistic blow hard fail.