GHOULIES (1985) – This was a product from Charles Band, so lovers of bad 1980s horror films know what they’re in for. Ghoulies also had the distinction of being the last movie ever shown on the Pre-MST3K cult show The Texas 27 Film Vault (Covered extensively here at Balladeer’s Blog).
Jack Nance from Eraserhead and Mariska Hargitay from Law and Order: SVU can both point to this flick as their most embarrassing moment on screen.
A Satanist played by rock singer Michael Des Barres leaves his mansion – which was the site of his Black Masses and human sacrifices – to a young couple played by Lisa Pelikan and Peter Liapis. They move into the creepy old place and the man starts to become possessed by the dark forces that linger in the mansion.
Eventually his dabbling in Satanic rituals causes his zombified father Malcolm (Des Barres) to climb out of his grave,which is conveniently located in the mansion’s backyard.
His mucking around also unleashes the title menaces, some of whom are midgets, one of whom is a clown-doll ala Poltergeist and some of whom are ugly, fake-looking Gremlins-wannabes. The attack scenes are almost as comically inept as those in Attack of the Beast Creatures, a film previously reviewed here at Balladeer’s Blog.
A large part of the film involves the resurrected and still-malevolent Malcolm and the Ghoulies slaughtering the guests that Liapis has invited to the vile mansion. Hargitay is one of the guests who gets wiped out in the laugh-til-you cry death scenes.
Jack Nance shows up at the end of the film to battle Des Barres in a duel of black magic vs white magic. The special effects here are typical of Charles Band Productions – which means a public access cable show could do better. The little person who played ET portrays one of the title creatures so that’s another nice bit of trivia from this hilariously awful film.
SPOILERS: The triumph of white magic at the end reverses the evil that’s been done, so the dead teens all get resurrected, but then the film says “to hell with our own continuity” and throws in a closing scene featuring the Ghoulies still alive and functioning and about to slaughter the human characters all over again.
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