This is a movie. And I watched it. I'm conflicted as to how proud I should be to own a copy of 1991's Beasties. I wish I owned it on VHS, but it was only distributed onto 200 tapes. That was 25 years ago, so if you are lucky enough to own a copy, fuck you. Fuck you and fuck your sister, the diseased whore. Er, I mean, bravo! Hmm, I guess I am proud to own Beasties after all. It's a b-movie in the truest sense. I probably could have subsidized the project with what I collect in Social Security, and yes, I scrounge off of taxpayers. I'm too lazy to work, baby. Does the svelte, acicular budget impair this smokeshow's entertainment value? That is the question. I felt entertained. Curiously, I was more magnetized to the gumpish characters than I was to the sci-fi/horror elements.
About those sci-fi/horror elements...the story puts a traditional foot forward as we open on couples making out in cars. Do these geographic "hot spots" exist in modern times? I swear, I've never heard a real-life reference to Make Out Point or some shit. Anyway, teenagers are bombarded by Ghoulie-sized imps. I'll pause the synopsis to comment on our title assailants. They look fucking cool, but their movement is so stiff, you might as well have the puppeteer in front of the camera. Waving. Alas, resources did not present themselves. I'm still scoring brownie Z'Dars for the creature designs and the fact that there are 4-5 different beasties. Unpause! We cut to a fresh batch of awkward adolescents on a double date.
Pause! Okay, this review is going to be longer than I had anticipated. Because I bought the DVD, I watched the uncut version. Writer/director Steven Contreras appended 20 minutes to the beginning of the film. The ocelot's share (that's right; I went with an alternative cat) of the supplementary footage is mere character development. In my cheap opinion, this bonus hang time benefits Beasties, although I can understand getting fidgety during the talky-talk. Prototypical college nerd Nelson is a gas. He knows everything, yet doesn't seem to realize that falling in love with a 15-year-old (in a matter of hours, no less) is highly inappropriate. Goth pest Hammerhead is the least intimidating bully this side of Nelson. From The Simpsons, that is.
There is a whole goth gang, and they're just adorable. Somehow, they become allied with the central baddie, a diabolical space wizard named Osires (pronounced "Osiris"). No, really. Osires knows of Nelson by virtue of them being arch enemies since the dawn of time...? Of course, none of the plot specifics are annotated for the viewer. I'm deliberately leaving out the uranology and the speedball of a twist ending. Beasties carries a flaky, surreal aura that reminded me of Winterbeast. I think I halfway dug it. Y'know, even for a z-grade acid trip shot on 8mm, it's not well-forged. The fight choreography is piss, and God, the kinda-sorta digital effects. God.
Why did I dig it again? Oh, right. The dialogue is hysterical, the namesake goblins (not hob) are neat, the baseless nudity is baseless and it follows a spunky 50's formula. Imagine The Blob wainscoted with an 80's crust. I forgot to mention that Beasties was produced in 1989, despite smacking video shelves two years later. It's an alright sit, man. TRIVIA: Pianos.
Posted by Dom Coccaro at 3:55 PM