Nov 20, 2014


Shitty Flicks is an ongoing column that celebrates the most hilariously incompetent, amusingly pedestrian, and mind-bogglingly stupid movies ever made by people with a bit of money, some prior porn-directing experience, and no clue whatsoever. It is here you will find unrestrained joy in movies meant to terrify and thrill, but instead poke at your funny bone with their weird, mutant camp-girl penis. 

WARNING: I tend to give away major plot points and twist endings in my reviews because, whatever. Shut up.

If the film Bear has taught me anything, it's this: run, screaming, from bears. For they want nothing more than to trash your minivan, steal your purse, and exacerbate your already strained familial relationships.

Meet Nick. He's 20-something, has a band/girlfriend, and willingly drives a minivan.

His brother is Sam, who might be in his late-20-somethings. You can tell straightaway by his wardrobe that he has never approved of any of Nick's choices.

Nick and Sam and their girlfriends then meet Bear. 

"I don't like the way he's looking at us," says one of the girlfriends about Bear, who seriously looks just adorable. Luckily Sam is there to save the day and shoot Bear something like 37 times.

Nick does not approve of this at all. "That bear was innocent! Now there's one less bear in the world! Thanks a lot!"

In the interim, Sam has just enough time to make an offensive joke about the Chinese before another Bear shows up.

"That's not the same Bear," offers up one of the girlfriends. "This one's got balls."

I honestly don't know if this was intended as a joke or not.


They turn to Sam and his magical gun, but it's empty. They promptly run and flee directly into the van, prepared to leave Jellystone Park forever.

"I don't think so!" says Bear as he pushes the entire fucking minivan over, his strength fueled by his new-found hatred for humans.   

"I'm sorry," Nick says directly to the back of Bear's gigantic fur ass. "I did not mean to invade your home."

In response, Bear lays down next to his fallen cub, looks sad, and has flashbacks to that time this dude named Sam emptied an entire clip into a fucking baby bear.

In the midst of the overturned minivan carnage, all of them offer up legitimately great ideas as to how they can improve their situation:

Girlfriend # 1 picks up a cake box, looks forlornly down at the cake that I guess was for someone's birthday, and thinks, "I wonder if I can fix it."

Sam suggests that Nick get out his guitar and play some music for the bears, in hopes they will sign him to a record deal.

Girlfriend # 2 takes this opportunity to offer up her own pearls of wisdom: "Stop fighting."

Working together, they right the minivan, setting it back on its tires, so that they may continue the minivan's goal of parking its fat ass directly in the express lane and not moving for any fucking reason unless it were to spot a Walmart at the next exit. (And don't forget your Pennsylvania plates, minivan!)

Nick tells Sam he can probably fix the minivan's engine, so he grins as widely as possible for some reason and slips out of the passenger seat. As Nick does all the work, Sam stands over him and continues to berate all of Nick's life choices. According to Sam, Nick's girlfriend is "smokin' hot," but not marriage material, and his career so far has consisted of playing gigs in dive bars for tips. Nick lets all of this roll off his shoulders with ease because he's inhumanly affable. And he LOVES bears.

Meanwhile, inside the van, the girls are getting along famously. "Suck my dick!" one of them says to the other. 

If only.

They quickly forgive each other, though, and trade some secrets, and cry.

Nick manages to fix the van's engine, but then the tire falls off, so it looks like they're walking. 

"I'm getting a really bad vibe like someone's watching us," says Girlfriend # 1.

Cue Bear to stick his head up out of a fucking bush like this is a cartoon. I love it.

Our characters run to a nearby drainpipe and climb inside, which has thankfully been punched full of holes, likely by Bear after a bad day at the mine. This allows Bear to stick his paws in at his convenience and bat around our characters. It's during this moment that Bear becomes not just a vicious animal but also a common thief, as he quite literally steals Girlfriend # 2's purse. I'm not sure why - perhaps it was filled with pic-a-nic foods.

Then they run BACK to the minivan.


"Instead of Groundhog Day it's like Grizzly Day where we keep coming back to the same place reliving our terror over and over but instead of the groundhog seeing his shadow it's the bear coming out of the drainpipe trying to kill everybody," says Girlfriend # 1, which is one of the most punchable things anyone has ever said. 

Bear agrees, so he rips her out of the minivan and destroys her. Sad Middle Eastern vocalizations fill the musical score, telling us what has happened is both upsetting AND mystical.

Nick, not quite terribly sure how to confront these new tragic events, runs out of the minivan, cries, and begins to jog in place. Sam hugs him and drags him back to the van, as incensed and disturbed by the jogging-in-place as we all are.

Bear, not satisfied with having taken out Nick's girlfriend, charges the van for Round Two. His adorable, gigantic bear ass can be seen circling the minivan, choosing the weakest spot to attack. 

"I'm going to fucking kill your babies!" Sam shouts at the attacking bear. "I'm going to eat your fucking babies! I am going to skullfuck your fucking face!" he adds, which is not only absurd, but also a bit redundant, but, he's in a really bad place right now, guys.

"He came back for retribution!" Nick offers up. "He came back for his honor! Native Americans believe bears contain a human spirit!"

Then Bear flips over the van. Again.

As our remaining characters root around the van's contents for a potential weapon, it cuts to the bear sitting on top of the van, lounging, one paw awesomely resting on a tire. Memes were invented for this shot.

The back of the DVD case boldly exclaims (including quotation marks) "What makes the film even better is the use of REAL bears, no CGI here, folks," and is credited to exactly no one. And it's true: At no point does the bear seem computer generated or automated. And at no point does the actual footage of the bear suggest it was shot with the same camera as the main action.

Way to go, jack-asses.

Our characters devise a plan to lure the bear inside their van, with the aid of some birthday cake, and then escape the van with enough time to run around the other side and close the door, trapping the bear inside. 

It all goes exactly to plan until Nick gets trapped inside the van with the bear and gets his human ass handed to him. He survives with only a few scratches as the injured bear takes off.

"This is never going to end, is it?" bellows Girlfriend # 2, who is apparently reading my mind.

Sam decides to try and hoof it to their intended destination - a local steakhouse - leaving Sam's girlfriend and Nick behind to openly discuss the affair they had that one time.

"It didn't mean anything to me. You were a good lay, that's all," Nick says, who up until now was supposed to be the likable one.

Girlfriend # 2 begins to sob and the actor playing Nick clearly fucks up his dialogue, but the scene forges ahead, anyway.

Meanwhile, Sam breaks through the shrubbery and finds himself in the parking lot of the steakhouse. And Bear follows, hilariously, right behind him. Sam cowers behind a car for a moment before Bear grabs him and drags him all the fucking way BACK to the van!

Holy shit!

"That bear wants us to suffer," Nick explains. "He brought Sam back because there's unfinished business. That bear knows more about us than we do about ourselves."

"I'm pregnant," adds the girlfriend. (It's Nick's.)

"We Bears are a proud race," adds Bear. (I wish.)

Bear ends in tears, confessions, self-sacrifice, and bears.

The moral of the story is: next time you drive in a minivan with your brother, make sure you're not fucking his wife, or else bears.

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