My friend bought this movie from a video store outside of town. And if you think this movie is only about drinking, surprisingly, you’re wrong. This movie is about friendship, patriotism and there are some underlying World War II themes in this movie as well. But if you turn it on and aren’t looking for any of those things, then it becomes solely about drinking.
When I started Beerfest, a warning label came up saying that if you try to consume this much alcohol, you will die. This is one of the few movies, besides Jackass, that I have seen a warning label. I disagree though that you would die if you drink this much beer. You would just have a wicked hangover for the next year.
But onto the movie.
The movie’s plot is based around a drinking championship called Beerfest, deep underneath Germany’s Oktoberfest. This competition has representatives from every country except America, until the Wolfhouse brothers arrive. They come face to face with the Von Wolfhaussen family, also their cousins. But their thieving, bastard, stable boy of a grandfather stole the family beer recipe and was forever hated by the Von Wolfhaussens.
After being humiliated by the two worst drinkers on the German team, the Wolfhouse brothers assemble a team of their own. This team consisted of the Todd and Jan Wolfhouse, Phil “Landfill” Krundel (later replaced by his twin brother Gill due to a freak drowning accident), Charlie Finkelstein (Jewish scientist who joined because they were facing the Germans) and Barry Badrinath (best beer game player turned man whore).
With under a year to train, the team goes to work. They try everything, including drinking with high school students and drinking ram urine. But as the months tick away, the team starts to waver. Todd and Barry have a falling out due to Barry’s college romantic encounter with Todd’s wife, Landfill drowns in a vat of beer and Fink loses his job. There was nothing that they wanted more than to outdrink the German team, but they couldn’t keep their own team together.
At Landfill’s wake, the team is inspired by the Wolfhouse brothers’ great gam-gam. Their great grandma, we learn, was a whore and slept with the eldest Von Wolfhaussen brother. This makes Todd and Jan the rightful heirs to the Von Wolfhaussen brewery and the owners of the family recipe, which is said to be the most delicious beer in the entire world. Now, the competition is a little more interesting and there is a lot more for the brothers to lose.
With the team back together and October arriving, they fly to Munich. After giving Todd several drinks to help him recall his drunken memories, they find Beerfest.
An entire year of training comes down to this. In the first round, the US faces England. This is the moment when the most blatant of references to World War II is said. “We already kicked their asses in WWII, cheerio, let’s do it again,” the new Landfill said.
It didn’t take long for the US and the Germans to face off and in proper movie fashion it goes to sudden death. The Germans won the first three and then the US came back fighting. Then the line chug. If you have seen the movie Dodgeball, you can guess how this ends. The Germans win, mostly by cheating, but the US challenges them to a double-or-nothing. The family recipe vs the family brewery and everyone must drink a boot.
I haven’t explained the boot. It is a glass of beer shaped like a boot, which is incredibly difficult to drink.
After Fink is insulted and has his Yakama thrown on the ground, he gets what Jan likes to call, “the eye of the Jew.” With Fink now as the anchor, the race sets off. Everything goes fine until Fink and his German opponent finish their drinks. The German team finishes just moments before Fink does, but the rule is not a drop can be spilled and there is still a drop in the German’s glass. As they try to catch it, it drops to the table. This is exciting and very climatic, until you realize that Fink is already done with his beer and therefore already the winner.
For being a raunchy, college humor, drinking movie, Beerfest does a nice job of keeping everything in order. Most of the things that are done are fairly believable, while still being absurd. The US beat the Germans, and the English, and the Jews won by a drop. Beerfest also doesn’t waste any time after the victory. With a brief moment of celebration, the movie goes to credits and the audience is spared from more story line and explanation.
My biggest complaint with the movie is the use of special effects. Until the final scene, there isn’t any noticeable CGI and I don’t think there needed to be any at all. The final scene, every beer is digital and it is obvious. The last drop in the glass is fake too. I think they could have just done normal beer, like every other scene, and it would have looked so much better.
*Feature Image credit to Saccurent.com