CORNER GAS: THE MOVIE (David Storey). 95 minutes. Opens Wednesday (December 3). For venues and times, see Movies. Rating: NN
Corner Gas: The Movie falls prey to the same problem as other sitcoms turned into features – Get Smart, The Flintstones and The Honeymooners spring to mind. What’s yummy as a half-hour snack turns tasteless as a full meal.
The original TV series (2004-2009) was about life in the tiny town of Dog River, Saskatchewan, where nothing much happens. Bored out of their minds, a collection of smart characters, idiots and loons engage in deadpan sarcasm, weird wordplay, escalating logic lapses and making mountains out of molehills. At its best, it reached moments of inspired daffiness.
The movie version ditches that focus on the small, a source of much of Corner Gas’s pleasure, for a big story centered on the town’s imminent bankruptcy and destruction at the hands of a corporate giant.
The entire cast returns, headed by creator Brent Butt as the gas station owner, his idiot buddy Fred Ewanuick and Gabrielle Miller, who runs the diner. The characters generate some chuckles, but too many of the gags fall flat.