Psycho Goreman – known initially as PG: Psycho Goreman – is a film whose eighties soul matches its eighties premise. This type of fantasy genre with monsters and space demons befriending kids is rarely talked about in 2021, but for those of us who remember that era’s tween movies, it’s a welcome return.
An unnamed alien comes crashing to earth and gets trapped underground in hibernation. Ages later, a couple of kids, Mimi (Nita-Josee Hanna) and Luke (Owen Myre) are digging in their backyard and find the spaceship. Mimi grabs an amulet from the ship, and the siblings head home, unaware that they’ve awoken the demon.
When they come face to face the next day, the alien proclaims his mission is to destroy the universe. One minor hiccup: Mimi’s amulet forces him – Psycho Goreman as they name him – to follow her every whim. Hi-jinx ensues, and, in true eighties fashion, lessons are learned.
Psycho Goreman hits the comedic notes very, very well. Had it been made in the eighties, it likely would have been a PG-rated movie. In 2021, knowing it’ll be watched by kids of that era, the gore-meter is turned to eleven, making Psycho Goreman a grown-ups’ kids’ film. (Granted, I would have loved it as a ten-year-old. Watching gory movies in 1987 was a family affair.)
Yet, the dialogue and the delivery thereof are what makes Psycho Goreman work. Mimi, with her amulet, commands Goreman to do anything a kid would want – a particularly memorable scene involving a friend and a transformation stands out – much to the alien’s chagrin. As the story progress, the two form a bond without Goreman actually learning much of a lesson. That’s something you don’t see much of in movies: An antagonist that softens without straying from his mission of destroying the universe. And Mimi – portrayed with brilliant comedic timing by Hanna – is just fine with that.
Writer/Director Steven Kostanski has put together a fun movie, one that even has a sprinkle of religious satire. Mimi’s prayer and treatment of the cross might not hit home with the religious crowd; others will snicker at its gusto. Psycho Goreman is a boon for those familiar with this sub-genre of eighties kids’ movies. Still, suspect others will find it equally funny: Steven Vlahos delivers some well-timed one-liners as the eponymous character.
A simple throwback movie with gory laughs – what’s not to love?
Like any good eighties film, Psyco Goreman has a tie-in line of toys and apparel to entice kids. Adult kids as it is. With disposable income. Get your action figures for a mere $40 price tag.
Letterboxd summary: Siblings Mimi and Luke unwittingly resurrect an ancient alien overlord. Using a magical amulet, they force the monster to obey their childish whims, and accidentally attract a rogues’ gallery of intergalactic assassins to small-town suburbia.
Ratings from around the web
|One Star Classics||5/6|