CanFilm Five: Toronto Filmmaker Ryan Noel

“CanFilm Five” is the Canuxploitation blog’s ongoing guest column, which brings together prominent filmmakers, bloggers, critics and programmers to discuss their most loved offbeat Canadian films.

Ryan Noel is a Toronto-based filmmaker and owner of Retro Films Entertainment. Building upon the success of his award winning gangster mockumentary THE NOTORIOUS NEWMAN BROTHERS, Ryan is currently crowdfunding his latest dark comedy web series MANUEL LABOUR through Kickstarter about the misadventures of a pair of beer-swilling junk collectors. For this installment of CanFilm Five, Ryan offers up his top five trashiest characters in Canuxploitation film:

For most, the 1980s were a creative rollercoaster. Every high was accompanied by a seemingly lower low and Hollywood was no exception. This was the decade that gave birth to the sequel, saw Coca-Cola acquire Columbia, capitalized on movie merchandising and spawned the VHS revolution.

Yet for me there was no greater high than the comedy films of the 1980s, and it was Canadian heavyweights such as John Candy, Rick Moranis and Dan Aykroyd who were dominating the silver screen with their unique sense of Northern humour.For an aspiring filmmaker like myself, growing up in Toronto in the ‘80s provided the perfect blend of patriotism and inspiration and allowed me to believe that I could one day represent this great nation’s twisted sense of humour. So in light of my trashy new web series MANUEL LABOUR, here’s my top 5 trashiest characters in Canadian cinema:

5. Bob and Doug McKenzie, STRANGE BREW
This film is a rite of passage for any Canadian filmmaker and one that I can’t seem to escape. Perhaps it’s because I live a few blocks away from the “Elsinore Brewery” or the fact that the film gets funnier and more ridiculous upon every viewing. Whatever the reason, Bob and Doug McKenzie are two hosers that are definitely trashy enough to make the top 5.


4. Uncle Nick, COOPERS’ CAMERA
Destined to become a Canadian Christmas classic, COOPERS’ CAMERA features one of the trashiest holiday characters since CHRISTMAS VACATION’s cousin Eddie Johnson. I’m talking about the scene-stealing uncle Nick and his best friend Jack Daniel’s. Forget reading The Night Before Christmas to the kids, the shower-peeing uncle will tuck them in with tender tales of getting liquored up, running over a dog (or a kid) and having a threesome while some guy fingers his “corn hole”… and you thought you’re family was dysfunctional!

3. Bottle pickers, CARTS OF DARKNESS
Drinking beer, doing time, drinking more beer and racing shopping carts down the steep streets of North Vancouver. It doesn’t get much trashier than this and even better is the fact that these are not scripted characters, but real drunken daredevils candidly captured in Murray Siple’s 2008 documentary.

2. The Trailer Park Boys, TRAILER PARK BOYS: THE MOVIE
I don’t think there have been more trashy characters on screen at the same time in the history of cinema than in TRAILER PARK BOYS: THE MOVIE, know what I’m sayin’?! These boys have just the right amount of f-bombs, alcoholism, drug dependencies and larceny charges to capture the number two spot. My how things have changed since Anne of Green Gables.

1. Terry and Dean, FUBAR
Compiling this list has made it blatantly obvious that Canadians are in love with trashy characters. Any of them could have been number one, but for me it has to be the beer guzzling, mullet wearing, foul-mouthed charm of Terry and Dean. It’s scary to think, but I’ve definitely crossed paths with people similar to these two and probably why I find these characters so hilarious and convincing. Now give’r!

Tags: , ,