The first Trailer Park Boys movie (aka The Big Dirty) was such a disaster that I went into this with extremely low expectations. Whether due to that, or simply the creators realizing they tried to fix what wasn’t broke, the second feature film is much more cohesive.
Directly following the events of the series’ (at the time) final outing, the television special Say Goodnight to the Bad Guys, Countdown to Liquor Day is a much more faithful transition from series to film. Returning to the mockumentary style exemplifies how crucial that aspect is to the series’ appeal — at times CtLD definitely just seems like a stretched-out episode of the show, albeit with certain cinematic conventions such as the in media res opening, but is still a much more watchable product than The Big Dirty.
A large part of this is because this time the movie is part of the show’s continuity. It feels no need to re-introduce characters, and is free to develop them as it sees fit. This time, Julian has perhaps his most ambitious “going legit” plan yet, attempting to open an auto body shop, while Bubbles is trying to free his kitties from an animal shelter before they’re euthanized. All of the characters have something to do, and it all culminates in a final heist that’s incredibly satisfying. A good old fashioned shootout (this time with squibs) and car chase (where Ricky pisses out of the window) make for a much more exciting finale than the anticlimactic “Big Dirty” of the previous film.
The argument could be made that Countdown to Liquor Day is simply “more of the same”, but in this case that’s exactly what’s needed.