Club Dread

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Broken Lizard's Club Dread
Club dread ver2.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jay Chandrasekhar
Produced by Richard Perello
Written by Broken Lizard
Starring Jay Chandrasekhar
Kevin Heffernan
Steve Lemme
Paul Soter
Erik Stolhanske
Brittany Daniel
Bill Paxton
Music by Nathan Barr
Cinematography Lawrence Sher
Edited by Ryan Folsey
Distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures (through 20th Century Fox)
Release dates
  • February 27, 2004 (2004-02-27)
Running time 103 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $8.55 million[2]
Box office $7,565,807 (Worldwide)[3]

Club Dread (also known as Broken Lizard's Club Dread) is a 2004 comedy horror film written by the comedy group Broken Lizard, who also created Super Troopers. It is directed by Jay Chandrasekhar, one of the group members.

Though the story is set on an island in Costa Rica, filming took place in Mexico.


On "Pleasure Island", a resort located in Costa Rica and owned by famous reggae musician Coconut Pete, staff members Rolo, Stacy, and Kelly sneak off to a mausoleum to have sex. While there, a masked killer stabs Rolo to death. The two girls run through the jungle and eventually split up, but the killer throws Kelly off a cliff, and decapitates Stacy before she can reach help. Hours earlier, Lars arrives at the island to start his job as the island's new masseur. He is introduced to the rest of the staff: Jenny, Juan, Putman, Dave, Yu, Carlos, Cliff, Sam the Fun Police, and Pete's bodyguard and retired FBI Agent, Hank. As the staff and guests party, Carlos is lured outside where he is swiftly murdered. Meanwhile, Dave tells the story of a man named Phil Colletti, a former Pleasure Island employee whom, years previously, murdered his fellow staff members. After Phil presumably disappeared, he was nicknamed "Machete Phil" by those who have heard about the legend. The next day, as the party continues, Cliff is violently murdered in a maze. As Jenny and Lars bond, they discover Carlos' body, while Cliff's body is also found. The staff band together where they find that the killer is targeting the staff, and all communication and transportation off the island have been destroyed. Hank convinces the staff to continue with their jobs and allow him to catch the killer. While the other workers resume their jobs and attempt to help find the killer, Yu remains persistent to tell the guests, despite warnings not to do so from the killer.

As she gathers people to make the announcement, she is attacked and chased by the killer. Hank attempts to save her, but has his throat slit before Yu is also murdered. The next day, the group find the bodies and believe the killer is murdering people according to one of Pete's songs. As the group continue their search for the killer, suspicion falls on one of the guests, Penelope. In order to eliminate Penelope as a suspect, Juan decides to seduce Penelope, with Jenny, Sam, and Dave hiding in her closet if she attempts to murder Juan. Penelope reveals that she arrived at Pleasure Island because she has never been at a tropical resort with no limits, After Penelope reveals that she, like Juan, is also a gymnast, the pair have sex. Meanwhile, Lars and Putman camp on the beach, however, Putman has a nightmare and runs off into the jungle. Meanwhile, Sam and Dave find a shrine filled with numerous photos of Lars and his friends, however, Lars' friends faces were replaced with that of Pete's. Due to the shrine and disappearance of Putman, the group believe Lars to be the killer and after Sam and Lars confront each other the next day, they lock Lars in a room. That night, Jenny goes swimming where she is interrupted by another one of the guests, Dirk. The killer soon appears and electrocutes Dirk, causing the electricity on the island to fail. After Jenny runs away and reunites with Putman, they realize Lars is not the killer, however, they find him gone from the room he was locked in.

The trio then go to Pete's house where they find Juan, Lars, and Dave. When the group find Pete's body, the are quick to turn on one another. However, Jenny convinces the group to stick together in order to survive through the night until the boat arrives to take them back to the main land. Despite this plan, the group all decide to split up from each other. Dave ventures to a hut where he manages to turn on the electricity. Jenny and Lars hear the music playing and go to the hut, only to find Dave's severed head. Jenny and Lars then hide from who they believe to be the killer and handcuff their foot to a bed, however it is revealed it was Putman. Before long, the killer appears and a trapped Putman is killed. While a party is being held in the club, Jenny and Lars arrive, only to discover the dead bodies of the staff, which are shown to the guests, causing them all to flee. Moments later, as Penelope and Juan arrive, Jenny discovers Sam about to be murdered by the killer. They arrive at the mud bath, only to find Sam dead. As Lars is looking for possible dead bodies in the other mud baths, Sam, who faked his death, jumps from behind, holds the machete to Lars' throat, and reveals himself as the killer. After Sam mentions that the Machete Phil story was a myth all along, he reveals that the reason why he started killing everyone on the island is because Pete decided to give the island to Dave, after it was nearly sold to the military.

This enraged Sam, fearing that Dave would run the resort into the ground and felt that the island should have been given to him. As Sam continues to gloat, Lars tackles him, allowing Jenny, Juan, and Penelope to escape. As the survivors run through the party crazed crowd, Penelope is carried away by other partiers, while Jenny and Juan lock themselves in the club. Soon after, the pair find Sam drowning Penelope in a large tank. Juan manages to smash the tank, saving Penelope. As Sam is about to kill the group, Lars, who was presumed dead, arrives and stabs Sam, allowing himself, Jenny, Penelope, and Juan to escape. However, as they are leaving, they discover Sam following them. The group runs through the jungle, and comes to a cliff which they jump off to escape. They find one of the islands sunk boats, and decide to take the propeller off and attach it to another boat. As Jenny, Lars, and Penelope swim to the boat, Juan retrieves the propeller off the sunk boat. However it is revealed that Juan has been stabbed and soon dies, before Sam attacks Jenny and Penelope. Lars comes to their rescue and together the group finally manage to defeat Sam, cutting him in half. Sam's upper half tries to attack Penelope, but Lars throws him back into the sea. Jenny, Lars, and Penelope eventually drive off, but unbeknownst to them, Sam's lower half attempts to swim towards the boat.



On one of the disc's commentary tracks the filmmakers state that they screened the film for Jimmy Buffett, who was so amused that he requested permission to sing some of the film's songs on one of his live tours.

Critical reception[edit]

Club Dread has received mixed reviews, scoring 45% on review aggregator site Metacritic based on 28 critics reviews, and 29% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 96 reviews. According to Rotten Tomatoes the consensus was "Comedy is too hit-or-miss in this slasher spoof".

Alternate version[edit]

In 2005, an unrated edition was released to DVD. This version of the film contains an additional 15 minutes of footage for a 118-minute running time. It features several extended scenes, and also restores a subplot involving two cops (played by Paco Mauri and Tony Amendola) that was absent in the theatrical edition. Director Jay Chandrasekhar states in one of the disc's commentary tracks that the original R-rated version is still the director's cut.


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