Quasi an over-the-top take on a classic tale

Whether it’s through the famous novel from Victor Hugo or the Disney cartoon, you’ve heard the tale of Quasimodo, the hunchback. Doubtless, you’ve never seen the tale told like it is in Quasi, a new film that streams on Hulu beginning April 20.

The film comes from Broken Lizard, the comedy team behind films like Super Troopers, Club Dread and Beerfest. If you’ve seen their films before, you know what you’re getting here. In this case, the five-man team of Jay Chandrasekhar, Kevin Heffernan, Steve Lemme, Paul Soter and Erik Stolhanske combined to craft the story for this new take on Quasimodo, while Heffernan directed the film. Each of the five appears in the film, with each taking on multiple roles to add to the fun.

In addition to the five-man Broken Lizard team, the film features Adrianne Palicki as the new queen. The action focuses on Quasi (Lemme), who is working as a torturer and wins a lottery to have a private audience with The Pope (Soter) when he arrives for a visit. What should be a great moment gets tough when the King of France (Chandrasekhar) asks Quasi to kill the Pope during that visit. Next, the Pope asks Quasi to kill the King, leaving him in a pickle as he tries to stay alive and follow his conscience despite being caught between the two most powerful men in his sphere.

This film plays out something like a fairy tale gone wrong, likely by design. The group has cited the influence of Monty Python, and that’s fairly evident here, especially as the core group all play multiple roles. But the humor here is decidedly R-rated. Some of the jokes land but some didn’t hit for me.

The production is certainly over-the-top, using only the most basic concept of Quasi as a hunchback to tell the story they want to tell. The cast works well together, and Lemme made me laugh in the lead role. His back-and-forth with Palicki was one of the best parts of the film.

Overall, those looking for a wild comedy on April 20 will likely appreciate this original film. There are some clever moments just not enough consistency for me. This is the kind of film with more of a niche audience.

Quasi streams on Hulu beginning April 20.

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.


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