Bluray Review: THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS MOVIE

sflogoQuite possibly one of weirdest choices to be put out on the Scream Factory label, Rod Amateau’s 1987 film, THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS MOVIE, is just on the fringe of being a genre film, so while it may seem like an interesting choice for the genre label, it wouldn’t look too out of place sitting next to other SF titles.

A complete bomb at the box office and mostly hated by all of those who initially watched it, the gross out kids comedy is ready for a second life, thanks to this packed with material Bluray release. It’s a film that guaranteed to be panned by a LOT of fright fanatics out there, but Scream Factory has done a great job of putting out films that cover every bit of the genre board and though it’s not a horror film by any means, it’s one that your kids just might be crzy to discover.

THE FILM:

Attempting to cash in on the Topps trading card phenomenon, 1987’s THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS MOVIE deals with Dodger (Mackenzie Astin), a youngGBK bullied kid who yearns for the popular girlfriend of the thugs who beat him up, and spend his time working at a shop owned by a magician/shop owner. After accidentally knocking over a magical trashcan, The Garbage Pail Kids, a group of foul, monsterish kids who fart, vomit, pee their pants and bite the feet of people almost immediately. We’re given Messy Tessie, Foul Phil, Valerie Vomit and Ali Gator, all of which create havoc and hard times for Dodger and his boss, before deciding to help the young kid.

Let’s get this out of the way: THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS MOVIE is in no way a GOOD movie, in fact, it’s laughable, silly and so watered down from the original gross out trading cards, that it isn’t far off from something like HOWARD THE DUCK or films with that tone to them. It’s family friendly, poorly acted (with the exception of Astin, who is always great), and has one of the most ridiculous plots around. With that being said though, it’s actually somewhat charming and cute, a film that could very well serve as a bridge between kids’ films and genuine genre fare. It’s the kind of gateway film that may not be your first, second or tenth choice to watch, but would make for a fun time for kids wanting to watch something borderline genre.

You can’t help but feel bad for the character of Dodger, a kid whose intentions are always good and tries to see the best in everyone, even the girl who clearly is using him. It’s fun to see the Garbage Pail Kids have the kid’s back, even if it comes with fighting then befriended bikers, peeing everywhere and getting put into a place for ugly prisoners.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

The real stars of the film have always been the makeup designed Garbage Kids, who were put together and designed by FRIDAY THE 13TH PART VII/TROLL director John Carl Buechler. Included on the disc, are brand new interviews with Buechler and his team, who talk about how they wish they could have made the kids scarier and more mischievous, not the family friendly characters they were told to create. You can tell that Buechler and Makeup Effects artist Gino Cognale did the best with what they were asked to do, and they have nothing but great things to say regarding the people who played the kids.

A new interview with star Mackenzie Astin is another standout in this release, his positive attitude and refusal to say anything very negative about the experience, the film and the process of making it is rare. You can tell Astin had a fun time doing the film, even if he knew it would be somewhat silly, and the new interview with him shows how much of a standup kind of actor he is.

So while it’s an odd title to be put out by Scream Factory, it isn’t a completely bad idea, and with the special features, the fun look of the characters and the obvious kid-geared film it is, it’s worth checking out.

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