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The Death of Dick Long Is a Wild—and Queer Inclusive—Ride

'The Death of Dick Long' Is a Wild—and Queer Inclusive—Ride

'The Death of Dick Long' Is a Wild—and Queer Inclusive—Ride

From the director of Swiss Army Man comes another bizarre adventure with surprisingly good representation of queer women.

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"What the hell did I just watch?"

That was the only thought running through my head as Nickelback crooned "How You Remind Me" over the ending credits of the bleakest comedy of the year, The Death of Dick Long.

From the minds that brought us Swiss Army Man, comes a film that's equal parts comedy and horror, an excruciating and hilarious slow-motion trainwreck doused in PBR and set ablaze. 

As the title states, Dick Long is dead. The movie begins with the movie's titular character having a jam session with his early 2000s alt-rock cover bandmates. But after probably too many beers, Earl and Zeke are frantically dumping Dick's limp body in front of a hospital and driving away in the dead of night. 

So what the hell happened? 

"It's a mystery, but its a different mystery than what you think it's gonna be," Sarah Baker, who plays Officer Dudley in the film, told PRIDE. "You start out like, 'Who did it, what happened?' But then when you find out, it's not really a crime exactly. It's something crazy that happened, and now all these people are left to deal with the aftermath."  

The film centers Zeke and Earl as they scramble to cover their tracks—and fail horrifically. The more Officer Dudley looks into Dick's death, the more bizarre and unsettling the story becomes. We won't spoil the movie's twist (you'll have to experience that for yourself), but the experience isn't just about these manchildren and their hijinks, as director Daniel Scheinerts points out, but about "the women who clean up their messes." What could've been another movie about idiotic men has been turned on its head as a touching exploration of consequences, responsibility, and humanity. 

"The women are fully fleshed out, real, smart, tough characters kind of corralling these men that are still totally children," says Baker. "I liked that they were all super grounded, didn't miss anything. Definitely, I think the women stand out in this movie."

It's also LGBTQ inclusive. Early in the film, Officer Dudley casually comes out to her sheriff as queer, expressing her excitement to get home to her wife and enjoy a slice of her quiche. The moment easily could've been straight-washed in a movie set in small-town Alabama. 

"I love that was just a totally earnest, normal relationship. My character is just in this new job and looking forward to returning to the normalcy of her home after delving into this case where it's way more disturbing or complicated than she ever would've thought and that she's ever faced."

Juxtaposed to the insanity Zeke subjects his wife and daughter to, the inclusion of a queer character feels especially poignant next to this primary "traditional" family in the film.

Baker adds, "I love that you got to see that tiny little slice of her home life and her finally getting to eat that quiche with her wife. This tranquil, domestic scene compared to what you would think normally. And this other couple's home, husband and wife, a little girl, where obviously things were not at all normal and probably hadn't been for a long time."

Nickleback is the final song featured in the film, but the soundtrack leans just as much into some of our other favorite 2000s bands to hate, like Creed and Hinder. When asked which of the groups she would prefer to listen to for the rest of eternity, Baker joked, "Oh god, that's a terrible question," she laughed. "Let's just say I'd rather never hear music again. Which would be very sad, but would be the sane choice."

How are people going to react to this film? Baker has no idea what to expect. "If [Swiss Army Man] was polarizing, I don't know what people are going to think about this." 

The Death of Dick Long is out in theatres now. Watch the trailer below!

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Taylor Henderson

Taylor Henderson is a PRIDE.com contributor. This proud Texas Bama studied Media Production/Studies and Sociology at The University of Texas at Austin, where he developed his passions for pop culture, writing, and videography. He's absolutely obsessed with Beyoncé, mangoes, and cheesy YA novels that allow him to vicariously experience the teen years he spent in the closet. He's also writing one! 

Taylor Henderson is a PRIDE.com contributor. This proud Texas Bama studied Media Production/Studies and Sociology at The University of Texas at Austin, where he developed his passions for pop culture, writing, and videography. He's absolutely obsessed with Beyoncé, mangoes, and cheesy YA novels that allow him to vicariously experience the teen years he spent in the closet. He's also writing one!