When I was young, I used to take refuge after school in front of the television where the
4:30 Movie was a weekday happening. Within every week, there was always something “new” to view on the tube. It was either giant monsters like Godzilla or Gamera or some science fiction story such as War of the Worlds or Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Every afternoon there was an invader that would arise from the earth or descend from the skies. There were other forms of sci-fi such as the Japanese import Ultraman or similar American fare such as The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers that would battle strange creatures that emerged from another world.
Psycho Goreman, a comedy/sci-fi/horror film produced by Dystopia Films and distributed by RLJE Films, hearkens back to Kaiju-styled films, but is much more graphic and has a far bloodier palette than any 70’s creature feature would allow.
Mimi (Nita Josee-Hanna) and her older brother Luke (Owen Myre) are engaged in their made-up game of “Crazy Ball” where Mimi is victorious. Mimi’s reward is forcing Luke to dig a gigantic hole in their backyard. Luke managed to discover a strange ancient-looking object with a gem attached to it. When Mimi frees the gem from the object, she awakens an ancient alien that she lovingly names Psycho Goreman or P.G. (played by Matthew Ninaber and voiced by Steven Vlahos). Mimi invites her new playmate to interact with her friends and family, much to the chagrin of her male crush Alasdair (Scout Flint), her mother Susan (Alexis Kara Hancey) and her father Greg (Adam Brooks). Meanwhile on Gigax, a planet that P.G. formerly resided within and conquered throughout, a meeting of the minds of the surviving aliens takes place, headed by Templar Pandora (played by Kristen MacCulloch and voiced by Anna Tierney), who ended P.G.’s reign of terror on Gigax by capturing and sending him into exile via deep burial into the bowels of our blue planet. Now that P.G. is free, Pandora shuttles herself to earth in order to destroy him once and for all. Betrayed by his former allies and battling his old nemesis Pandora, P.G. battles for his existence in a wild game of “crazy ball”.
Written and directed by Steven Kostanski, this low-budget flick is a fun excursion into old school Kaiju creature features. This film would have its place on a late-night boob tube horror show (minus the massive gore) or midnight movie fare. This gritty, DIY endeavor where many of the colors and the textures of the props and practical effects look similar to many items that reside in households which may make the film look cheap and cheesy but, on the flip side, gives this film its charm.
The performances are very appealing and fun to witness. Owen Myre is wonderful as the bullied brother Luke. The tag team of Matthew Ninaber and Steven Vlahos are the perfect combo as the menacing turned moderate monster from another world. Alexis Kara Hancey and Adam Brooks are fantastic as Mimi and Luke’s conflicted and beleaguered parents. Nita Josee-Hanna stands out as the strong, smart-mouthed, diminutive firecracker Mimi who, to say she is a force to be reckoned with, would be a severe understatement.
While this movie unashamedly shows off its warts, the film is engaging and has many funny moments with a strange meet cute and a budding relationship between two kids and their unusual “friend” from another planet. If you like a bloody b-movie with gore and guts to spare, then venture a view.
Psycho Goreman will stream on Shudder starting May 20.
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