Tusk is directed by indie legend Kevin Smith and stars Justin Long, Michael Parks, Haley Joel Osmet, and Genesis Rodriguez. This is one of the most unique and original films I have seen in many years.
It is a genre mixing horror-comedy that has few laughs and is not very scary. It is filled with “WTF” moments that made me wonder if I was supposed to laugh or cringe.
However, I still loved this movie. I love it not so much for the execution but for it’s back story and how it came about.
Smith has become a podcasting icon with his production partner Scott Mosier. This film is based on a conversation that Smith and Mosier had during one of their episodes called “The Walrus and the Carpenter.” In the episode, Smith and Mosier discuss an add for an available room for rent free of charge. The catch is that the renter must dress up as and pretend to be a walrus for two hours a day. Their conversation shifts into basically a pre-production meeting for what is now Tusk.
Most of what they talk about ends up being in the film. What I find most interesting is how much fun they had discussing the possibilities of this actually becoming a movie. It was an intimate insight into the mind of a filmmaker and everything that goes into the birth of a film.
I like to think that this is how all films begin. They start with an idea and a desire to tell a story. That idea gets fleshed out into a script, storyboards, and eventually a full blown motion picture. Tusk is one of the few movies that you can point to an exact moment and say “this is were it all began.”