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THREE CRAZY LITTLE CRITTERS!

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Not one, not two, but three little critters are heading our way this year! As the old adage goes, you wait around for one, only to be met with a handful of the little blighters!

There is a beloved sub-genre in horror full of disproportionate killers intent on making mince-meat of anyone five foot and above! Gremlins, Critters, Ghoulies – just a few examples of the genre, that’s bought both hilarity and horror to audiences for over thirty years. It would appear this trend is set to continue with three new entries.

 

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Nine years after Seed of Chucky, Curse of Chucky arrives (23/10/13 on DVD and Blu Ray). This sixth film in the series begins a new chapter in Chuckys legacy. A family is brought together over the death of one of their own. During their mourning period a package is delivered to their home. To the utter joy of the youngest member of the family a (Good Guy) Chucky doll resides inside. From the looks of the trailer, it’s not long before Chucky’s back to his old tricks – with an already emotional family forced to confront their own mortality!

Don Mancini returns to write and direct Curse of Chucky. This man has written the scripts for each entry, taking the director’s reigns with 2004’s Seed of Chucky. He obviously knows his red-headed little creation inside and out.

Outside of Jaws and more commercial horror fare, Childs Play was probably my first introduction to adult horror. I was a big fan of the Garbage Pale Kids and this film had the distinct whiff of Art Spiegelman’s crazy creation! Looking back, it seems the obvious choice for anyone willing to dip their toe in to the genre – something so small couldn’t possibly pose a threat, right?!

I returned to the Chucky franchise with Bride of Chucky (1998). Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer were putting bums on seats again and Bride of Chucky was another self-referential love letter, giving credibility back to its star.

The other critters coming our way lie firmly in the stable of horror/comedy.

 

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Hell Baby tells the story of Jack and Vanessa, a couple who have moved in to a dilapidated fixer-upper, only to discover it’s the most haunted building in town. Vanessa finds herself impregnated with something truly demonic. With the arrival of the titular critter mere days away, husband Jack calls in the Vatican! The film is brought to us by writer/director Robert Ben Garant and his team (Reno 911). I’m not familiar with their earlier work, but this looks positively hilarious (no release date as yet, unfortunately)!

There’s no evidence of a demonic baby in the trailer, but I’m confident there’ll be a delivery of something truly obnoxious by the final act?!

There’s no question these films have one foot firmly in comedy. Even with a franchise like Leprechaun, the sequels soon take a dive in to self-parody. Despite their dubious credibility, they have a raucous and devoted following. The leprechaun series is noteworthy for its longevity – the longest running of all its miniature contemporaries (this includes next years, Origins)!

Beginning in South Dakota and ending in, “tha hood”, Leprechaun is a series which has tested its stoner audience like no other. Its crowning achievement has to be when Warwick Davis’ Irish scallywag appeared in space!

The sub-heading alone is hilarious – no doubt it does exactly what it says on the tin! This film has it all though; hellish digital effects, women running ‘round in their underwear and lines like this, “Let that be a lesson to you lass. Always wear a prophylactic!” I can’t wait to see it!

 

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Finally we get to Bad Milo!

This film features Ken (Ken Marino), an office drone with stress issues. It would appear his reluctance to deal with said issues is manifesting physically – in his stomach! Milo is the result of this build-up of tension – a literal shit-demon intent on getting back at those who Ken was reluctant to face (again, no release date as yet – damn you, rest of the world)!

This little critter, like Chucky, takes centre stage, leaving a trail of chaos and death in his wake. No doubt the filmmakers go the creative route with each gory death – there certainly appears to be a lot of claret on display here!

Both Bad Milo and Hell Baby have seemingly lucked out with their respective casts – it’s like a who’s who of funny! Patrick Warburton, Gillian Jacobs, Stephen Root, Rob Cordry and Leslie Bibb – all stalwarts of comedy television and film.

I’m quite taken with the posters for each of these forthcoming terrors. Even Chuckys one-sheet harks back to the afore-mentioned trading card series – you gotta love those chubby little hands! Bad Milo and Hell Baby particularly, have decided upon an illustrated campaign. Hell Baby has gone the way of the minimalist approach – hugely popular at the moment! Illustrated by Paul Shipper, Bad Milos offering is simply fabulous – Drew Struzan eat your heart out!

If there’s a message to be taken from this sub-genre, surely it’s respect and love the little guy (or gal). One thing’s for sure, I’m not gonna hesitate to help out a shorter soul who’s reaching for the top self at Safeway ever again!

1 Comment

  1. Jane Payne says:

    They say, “small is beautiful”, I’m not so sure after reading this article! Thanks Alex for your reviews – great insight in to the genre.

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