Film Review: Psycho Goreman

psychogoreman indexRight at the beginning of this very knowing b-movie from Steven Kostanski, one of the directors of Manborg and Father’s Day, an opening scroll fills us in on the plot as we learn that a big, evil bastard (Matthew Ninaber) once threatened the universe, but was eventually overcome and locked away on a distant planet that no one gave a fuck about. Unfortunately for humanity that planet was Earth, and even more unfortunately it is only about six minutes in to the film when two kids find the creature and are responsible for its freedom.

A strange mixture of kid’s fantasy movie and horror slasher follows, and one which like Stranger Things is undoubtedly influenced by eighties fare, and comes with a very John Carpenter-esque score, though the movie is set in the nineties judging by the technology in the movie and the video game they play in one scene. Not that any of that really matters, and bar a lack of mobile phones you wouldn’t really be able to tell what recent era it was set in.

Kostanski has shown a clear love for absurd and bizarre fantasy horror in his previous films but is even more playful here as Mimi (Nita-Josee Hanna) discovers the big evil bastard quite by chance one day with her brother Luke (Owen Myre), along with a pink glowing gem that allows her to control the monster. After naming him Psycho Goreman, or PG for short, she’s borderline sociopathic and responsible for the death of a good few individuals, as well as turning the object of her affections, Alastair (Scout Flint), in to a giant brain with large eyes and tentacles.

PG makes it very clear that he’s going to murder Mimi the first chance he gets, and Luke is disturbed by his sister’s behaviour and you really can’t blame him, especially after she’s all but responsible for melting a policeman but keeping him alive in a horrendous gory state. Mimi’s casual cruelness is the least of their problems though as PG’s former cohorts beam down to Earth, as does one of the aliens responsible for imprisoning PG in the first place, an angelic looking being called Pandora who gives Mimi’s mother Susan (Alexis Kara Hancey) super powers so that she can fight along side her.

All of the above insanity is played for laughs and the movie also has a lot of fun parodying eighties movie tropes, so there’s a montage where they get PG to try on different clothes, and then the same thing occurs with Alastair, they try to play their favourite game Crazyball with the monster and it’s also a major part of the beginning and the end, and the parents soon find out about PG’s existence but of course can do little to prevent the mayhem that surrounds him. Along with all of this are some fun, brief space based flashbacks which tell more of PG’s origin story, and an awful lot of over the top and gruesome deaths.

The dialogue is impressively ridiculous throughout, PG’s death threats are inventive and demented, while the kids talk like real kids and tease each other in a believable manner. The parents are fleshed out as they bicker and insult each other a fair deal with the father getting a number of  very funny snarky lines, while the special effects for PG and the other aliens are the kind of thing which will make you childishly giggle as they’re so absurd.

It excels at being extremely silly in places too, this is a movie that’s been deliberately made for lovers of trashy cinema, and the script is packed with all manner of daftness that will make you laugh a huge amount. It’s even oddly heart warming in places too, and Nita-Josee Hanna is superb in the lead role, carrying the movie and making her character likeable even though she’s technically also a monster at times. A huge amount of ridiculous fun, this is one of the best homages made to creature features yet made, and hopefully will be successful enough to lead to a sequel, if not a trilogy.

★★★★

Alex Finch.
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You can watch Psycho Goreman via Amazon here.

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