Like 2014's Wolfcop, Bubba the Redneck Werewolf is the kind of horror comedy that comes prefabricated as a midnight cult movie for people who find the title hilarious in and of itself. And while the intentions of both films may seem cynical on the surface -- a low-budget effort pitched at hipsters who can pat themselves on the back for watching something so goofy and outrageous -- both films escape the trap of being Air Quote movies by infusing themselves with a real love for what they're doing. I may not love Bubba, but I can't accuse anyone of not caring about the thing they're making.
Chris Stephens plays Bubba, a sad-sack redneck who hangs out in a bar and pines away for the gorgeous Bobbie Jo (Malone Thomas), who won't give him the time of day. Enter the Devil, who strikes a bargain: Bobbie Jo's heart for Bubba's soul. Before you can say "I can't imagine a possible downside," Bubba wakes up as a werewolf (now played by Fred Lass under heavy makeup) whose life has greatly improved as a result. The same can't be said of the rest of the folks in town, most of whom have gotten the fuzzy end of the lollipop when it comes to their Devil's deals. They all turn to Bubba to right the wrongs, bring down the Devil and get Cracker County back to normal.
The DVD of Bubba the Redneck Werewolf contains a 16-minute "making of" featurette, a blooper reel, a couple of deleted scenes that underscore the "shot on video" feel (the feature must have undergone a process in post to make it appear more film-like), a music video, footage of both Lass and Hyman having their makeup applied and the original theatrical trailer.
I admire the spirit of Bubba the Redneck Werewolf more than I admire the finished product. That it's lasted 20 years as an indie comic book is impressive; that it has been brought to the screen by a group of people clearly passionate about seeing it realized as a movie is equally impressive. I like that they've made a film that doesn't rest on its own cult potential alone. This isn't a case of filmmakers deliberately setting out to make a "so bad it's good" movie, the way I could easily imagine something like this going. I'm not wild about the film in the end, but it's not for lack of trying.
DVD release date: January 17, 2017
78 minutes/2014/Not Rated