Tusk is a movie made in 2014 that didn’t need to ever be made.

Typically, I would just move on immediately from a movie like Tusk because it is so forgettably bad. But I need to share the story by this movie-going experience. During Tusk’s limited release, my wife and I went to Westgate (where last week’s Super Bowl was held) in Glendale on a weekend in early October.

When we went to a purchase our tickets for Tusk on a fairly busy evening, the cashier couldn’t stop himself from snickering and asking, “Do you like these kinds of movies?”

Strike one.

Justin Long

We were forewarned, but we didn’t call an audible and persisted with the plan to watch Tusk. In a massive multi-level complex with so many screens, the single showing of Tusk was deserted. Not a soul to be found. We had the entire theater to ourselves, which is a damning indication of this movie’s appeal.

Strike two.

Before the movie even started, Tusk was down in the count after consecutive swings and misses. I like Kevin Smith. I don’t always enjoy his movies, but he does have the balls to make whatever he wants. For that, I am grateful. For Tusk, I am not grateful. Tusk is so grating and dripping with an undeserved sense of self-satisfaction. Fans of Kevin Smith’s SModcast will surely love seeing this podcast come to life on the screen. But even as a B-quality movie, Tusk doesn’t work because it’s neither funny nor entertaining. After a promising beginning with Wallace (played by Justin Long) and Teddy (Haley Joel Osment) doing The Not-See Party podcast, the movie comes to a screeching halt and falls flat on its face.

Haley Joel Osment

Tusk is a humorless version of The Human Centipede (First Sequence).

Why do we need Tusk when we already have that glorious piece of hilarious B-movie Hall of Fame?

It offers nothing new. At every turn, Tusk mugs for the camera as if to bask in its absolute awfulness. Obviously, the plot doesn’t matter much with this type of movie, but Tusks slows considerably once you get into the fat (or blubber) of the story. Although Haley Joel Osment would probably make a better real-life walrus, it is Justin Long’s character Wallace who is the target of being turned into Mr. Tusk. The interactions between Wallace and Howard Howe (played by Michael Parks) are just painful to watch. Not because of blood and guts or anything like that—they’re just dreadfully boring scenes to endure.

Michael Parks

Michael Parks seems to be a Kevin Smith favorite. I’m not sure why. I’m not a big fan.

While Michael Parks did a decent job in Red State (also by Kevin Smith) as a facsimile of crazy Fred Phelps, he doesn’t add to the character of Howard Howe. Tusk would have benefitted by casting an actor with more charisma and a considerably higher aura of crazy. Think of what this movie might look like if Crispin Glover played Howard Howe. Don’t get me wrong, Michael Parks is not the biggest thing wrong with Tusk, but it’s an easy area to improve just by hiring a different actor that can bring something to the table.

Speaking of the biggest thing wrong with Tusk, why the fuck is Johnny Depp in this movie?

Johnny Depp

I don’t know if Kevin Smith has incriminating photos of Johnny Depp strangling himself with his several scarves while jerking off, but there has to be some devious reason behind Johnny Depp agreeing to be in this turd. Depp plays Guy Lapointe who—as far as I can tell—is a slightly retarded Quebec ex-cop that becomes a primary part of the movie when Justin Long’s character goes missing. I think Guy Lapointe was supposed to be funny. I don’t know what gave Kevin Smith that impression when he was creating that character because there is not a single laugh from any scene involving Johnny Depp. The worst scene is between Johnny Depp and Michael Parks where they are literally dueling retard impressions.

Strike three.

Tusk isn’t the worst movie ever made. But it might be in the discussion. The only thing that saves Tusk from being a complete zero is that it warrants acknowledging Kevin Smith’s balls to make this movie and the accomplishment of getting enough funding. It has also created my new favorite movie fact: the walrus suit in Tusk was stitched together entirely from Kevin Smith’s real wrinkly, blubbery ball skin.

If you ever find yourself in a position to watch Tusk, listen to everyone and just don’t. Save yourself.

No amount of drugs in the world can make this movie watchable.


0.5 out of 5 stars

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