'Dude, Where's my car?' starts with an ominous-sounding "This movie is based on
actual events", and then follows it up with a set of such improbable happenings
that you can't help but laugh. At times. At others you are left with a curious
sense of having seen all of it before - déjà vu, but not exactly so. Yes, I am
accusing 'Dude, Where's my car?' of plagiarism - but plagiarism of the most pardonable
and even enjoyable kind. 'Coz the movie is a wonderful parody of everything that
Hollywood (and consequently, Bollywood) holds sacred and dear. And more often
than not, it manages to hit its intended mark(s).
Jesse and Chester, two very dude-ish dudes, wake up one morning with no memory of the previous night. Neither is extremely concerned or worried about this rather strange amnesia, as they're convinced it's just a result of being stoned - "wasted", as they put it. But a series of events, like the unexplained disappearance of Jesse's car, the attention (ahem!) that they receive from a beautiful girl and their encounter with a transsexual stripper (ahem again!) makes them suspect they are in the middle of some very funny business. The rest of the movie confirms these suspicions.
Everyone, including a gang of earthlings convinced that they will leave earth for greener... er, different pastures, the transsexual stripper and of course, the aliens (?), seems to be looking either for a suitcase full of money or the "Continual Transfixtor" (or something to that effect...), a mysterious and powerful device that has the power to destroy the universe, "and whose mystery", as the characters in the movie continually remind you, "is only exceeded by its power." And everyone seems to think that Jesse and Chester have both the money and the device.
The movie boldly mocks every Hollywood convention that you can think of. Most of the scenes, like the one where Ostriches attack Jesse and Chester, are rather obvious mockeries of big blockbusters (Jurassic Park, in case you didn't get that). The others just make fun of Hollywood's fondness for aliens, kidnappings, mysteries, hostages and Big Monsters That Eat People. In the bargain, you get to see a wacky, funky movie that makes very little sense at the surface, but also makes a pretty strong statement beneath.
The movie is a little irritating at the beginning, but it improves the moment you realize what it is that it's trying to say. The editing leaves a lot to be desired, though. The jokes are predictable, and you enjoy them only when you realize that they are meant to be that way. But given all the resources and ideas that it had at its disposal, DWMC could have been a better movie. It suffers from a serious lack of subtlety and tends to get a bit too frivolous at times. And if you are the kind that likes your James Bonds and Godzillas, you might not appreciate DWMC's sense of humor.
Ashton Kutcher and Seann William Scott are endearing as Jesse and Chester. The
rest of the characters too do what's expected of them. DWMC might not be a great
movie, but it is certainly worth a watch.