Sunday, September 30, 2012


D. John Carl Beuchler
 Full Frame

There is no denying the GHOULIES movies are some retarded shit. Each one gets dumber as the series goes on, but they are consistent in their lunacy. You get what you pay for with a GHOULIES movie. I mean how can you expect anything else when the poster art is a little GREMLINS rip-off monster climbing out of the toilet. 

But I admit to a soft spot for them. I caught the first two for the first time only recently when THIS-TV played them back to back last October. I shocked myself by how much I enjoyed them. They were dumb as hell, but kinda charming. Especially in this day and age of CGI overload, little blatant puppet creatures wrecking havoc is very entertaining. 

This entry has the F/X creator John Carl Buechler taking the directorial reigns and he goes all out to try and prove he is not some F/X guy with no directorial chops. We end up with ANIMAL HOUSE on a fraction of the budget with gooey never convincing monsters running amok. he jams every conceivable gag you can think of on screen and then some. Nothing is too low or stupid for this movie! It actually becomes kind of admirable by the end. 

The local college is having their annual "Yank War" in which the competing fraternities try to out do each other with new and crazy pranks. One Frat brother (who is unfortunately channeling Pauley Shore) finds an old Ghoulies comic book that contains the incantations to bring the little bastards to this realm. Various people almost read it aloud until angry teacher Ragnar (Kevin McCarthy who is clearly never afraid to sink as low as the material calls for) actually does it. He sets the Ghoulies in motion, YOJIMBO style to make each frat think the other one is doing the nasty stuff they are responsible for. There's shower scenes, pillow fights, a panty raid and lots of naked women (which was missing in the previous PG-13 entries). 

The Ghoulies themselves are never impressive or even very good effects. But Buechler embraces that and has them cracking jokes, talking, walking around and in a few scenes swinging giant hammers and golf clubs. It becomes really surreal, especially once he has them put clothes on, dressing like Fraternity assholes. My girl friend walked through the room while I was watching this and was taken aback by how CUTE they were. And she is right. Especially the one wearing the ball cap. 

I should hate myself for enjoying this as much as I did, but I refuse to live with regrets. It is dumb as the law allows, and funny as shit. I watched the edition in the LionsGate 8 film horror pack and it looked really good to me. But don't pay the insane prices assholes who horded that DVD are asking. Now that Halloween Season is upon us it is finally showing up all over at K-Mart and Walmart stores for $5 like it was always intended. 

Watch for a supporting role from Jason Scott Lee who would only a couple years later be playing Bruce Lee in DRAGON: THE BRUCE LEE STORY and would go on to many action roles. Here is a skinny, geeky Frat brother. 

Review © Andrew Copp

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