Saturday, October 29

Captures from Lionsgate's British Ghoulies III DVD

Originally written back in 09/09: During college prank week, a professor interested in the occult (Ragnar, Kevin McCarthy) confiscates a comic book, entitled Ghoulish Tales, from a student which has the power to summon the ghoulies once again. After a few false starts, Ragnar finally makes the pint-sized hellions flesh from the bowels of a custom ghoulie-etched toilet. Once learning of the pranks, the ghoulies begin dispensing their own brand of destructive hijinks (along with drinking 2,001 beers and Drain-O) which only escalates the war between the fraternities. Meanwhile, the leader of the frathouse, Skip (Evan MacKenzie), is having girl trouble with his former squeeze dating the leader of the preps. Ragnar just gets crazier-and-crazier as he discovers the power he wields being the ghoulies master. Soon Skip and girlfriend fall under the beady eyes of the slimy demons.

Certainly one for the inebriated. The ghoulies talk in this one, which was surprising with the growling and meowing of the two prior flicks. Their personalities mimic The Three Stooges with the green buff one being Moe, the hairy cat-like one Curly, and the hairy snoutted-one gets stuck with all the work like Larry. They also constantly spew a stream of mildly amusing quips and whack each other about their heads (complete with bonehead sound effects), but sometimes can be hard to understand as they talk over each other.

If that sounds overly comical--it is. Buechler thoroughly steeps his sequel in a more comic than horror tone. The few deaths are bloodless by goofball means such as plunger, stretched tongue, and toilet flush. One aspect noticeably pumped up, not that I mind, are the boobs and butts, even staging a panty raid night with plenty of topless babes bouncing around...or showering. It's always fun seeing Kevin McCarthy play the sweaty nutter and the cartoonish score eerily echoes Peter Dasent's work from Peter Jackson's Braindead (Dead Alive). Not that funny, but it's all innocuous enough to warrant at least one watch.

So much for that wishy-washy assessment because since then Ghoulies III: Ghoulies Go to College has become a guilty pleasure. This third purely comical sequel has become my favorite of the series and somehow gets funnier each time. So far, it hasn't been released on DVD stateside, but has seen a long out-of-print disc in the United Kingdom that recently got reissued from Lionsgate as part of Saw rollercoaster theme park promotion. The bad news is the unmatted full frame transfer has nearly every issue possible being from a very poor, old video master with a sloppy transition to digital. The picture is also much darker than Vestron's domestic VHS, so I'd advise just to stuck to that tape if you already have it. This barebones DVD went for zany prices while OOP, but currently has it for about $10 shipped to America for those region free. If anything, those with OCD and the other three on disc can finally complete the set.

(direct disc captures, saved as lossless .pngs)


DrunkethWizerd said...

I've seen this, but it was so long ago that I can't remember anything. I'd love to own it though, as it most surely a film that I would enjoy thoroughly... being inebriated as I usually am.

Jayson Kennedy said...

Yeah, it's worth tracking down, it's got that whole "watch over and over without getting old" stupid crap vibe nailed.

Guts and Grog Reviews said...

Thanks for posting this. One of my all time favorites.

Explosive Action said...

I've got the big box Aussie VHS of this which has a priceless cover I'll scan if anyone is interested. you dare tread upon the staircase?

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