Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mr. Boogedy and Bride of Boogedy

Sorry for the delay, intended to have this up saturday night but had some technical difficulties. Tonight's movies are the classic Disney Channel made-for-tv horror movies Mr. Boogedy and Bride of Boogedy. Disney channel used to air these constantly around Halloween from 1986 until about 1999 or so, so this used to be a big part of my childhood. Problem: I haven't seen this since 1999 or so, and can't actually remember that much. So, we'll see just how well these two films hold up!

Sadly, right off the bat it's obvious this is super low quality. We enter upon a fictional family that is largely made up of recognizable people. The dad, Carleton Davis, is Clark, bearded creepy dog handler from The Thing, as well as Stanley, the adult version of Seth Green, in Stephen King's IT. The son, Corwin, is Bud Bundy from Married with Children. The daughter, Jennifer? The original Buffy, from the Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie. Their youngest son, R.E.? That little boy from Alf. I'm already amused.

They move out to a stereotypical haunted house, where they meet John Astin of all people, dressed as some 1800's creepy guy. If the name doesn't ring a bell, John Astin was Gomez in the original Addams Family TV show, and was the crazy inventor guy from Brisco County Jr, among many other things. Also I'm realizing within five minutes this movie has no understanding of pacing in the slightest. John Astin's being as crazy as he normally is, and warns the family that the obviously haunted house is haunted by the "Boogedy Man." I fucking love Astin, he's great at playing wacky, hammy characters. Also we find out that the dad's business is gag items, which is fitting if you consider who he played in Stephen King's IT.

The family spends a few nights in their obviously haunted house, and a few of the kids end up experiencing the paranormal. Most hilariously, the daughter ends up blacking out after seeing him, and apparently clicking her heels together and infringing on L. Frank Baum's copyright. They also find slimy footprints on the walls, but they can be peeled off so the dad just assumes it's just a prank being pulled on them. There's also the fairly obvious poltergeist activity, hearing voices, a toaster jumping around and becoming superheated, etc. Keep in mind, this house is in crappy condition, cobwebs everywhere, and looks so cartoonishly haunted that it's not even funny. Cue the kids having to handle this on their own!

The kids seek out John Astin, who gives them a super low budget, hilaribad history flashback about William Hanover, a clown amongst puritans in early US History who became Mr. Boogedy, a jerkass puritan that hates everyone and loves scaring kids. Since he's telling them this from a pop-up book, the live action dramatization of this is covered in a thick white fog, the backdrops are crudely drawn, etc. Mr. Boogedy sells his soul to a very campy Satan for a magic cloak to help him get the woman he wanted, but ends up blowing up his house, taking himself, the woman he wanted, and the woman's child, Jonathan. That's a terrible story, Mr. Astin.

Back at home the kids try again to explain to their dad that the place is haunted, but he still refuses to believe. The house apparently gets fed up with his skepticism because suddenly it goes poltergeist heavy on him, and a fucking mummy comes to life and starts dancing around. This makes the dad believe, but he still seems very hesitant to move, and I'm suddenly filled with flashbacks to the Simpsons parody of Poltergeist and Amityville Horror from the very first Treehouse of Horror episode. That's something I need to do soon, just marathon all the Treehouse of Horror episodes.

That night, since the family decided to stay, the mother sees a vision of the woman Mr. Boogedy wanted who tells her that she needs to destroy Mr Boogedy's cloak. The kids end up encountering the ghost of Jonathan, who is kinda like a mix between a lightning being and the spirit of a Jedi and is described as feeling like one of their dad's joy buzzers. The family also finally encounters Mr. Boogedy, who is some big green ghost thing in dark robes that zaps people. Problem, the zapping doesn't actually hurt anyone, it just makes their hair stand up. Also he repeatedly says "Boogedy boogedy boogedy", which just sounds retarded.

If that wasn't wacky enough, Mr. Boogedy magically makes a vacuum chase the youngest kid around, but the kid ends up using the vacuum against him by sucking up his cloak and leaving Mr. Boogedy powerless, causing him to vanish. The ghost of the woman and her child are apparently at peace now, so they vanish, and all appears well, although Mr. Boogedy proves he's still around by talking and making a sign wink at the dad. Still, the family doesn't care, and neither does the movie apparently because that's where this ends.

Altogether this... was really different than I remembered. I remembered loving this as a little kid, but didn't remember how damn silly and immature it actually was. You could say it's because I had different tastes as a kid, but for the most part I hated a lot of kid's films for that even when I was little. That's actually what got me more into horror films. I didn't want to see crappy, wacky comedies where most of the humor came from people being clumsy or acting goofy, so I just watched my grandfather's VHS collection, which was largely made up of the same kinds of b-grade horror films I still watch to this day. I still kinda detest what most companies put out as kids movies these days, save for Pixar who I highly respect. Still, this is only 45 minutes, so I'd recommend giving it a viewing, especially if you vaguely remember watching it as a kid.

Bride of Boogedy follows the same family from before, only now for some reason the daughter is played by the lead chick from Wishmaster. Not that I'm complaining, Wishmaster was pretty awesome. The film starts with some guy in a privateer costume telling a bunch of kids the story of Mr. Boogedy around a campfire. I don't really get why this guy dresses like that, but he wears this outfit for the whole movie, so get used to it.

We cut back to the family from the first film who have invited a fat guy over just to scare the crap out of him using ghost costumes and a giant fake costume. I know that's how -I- like to spend my Halloweens. They're apparently all preparing for the Lucifer Falls Festival. I find it amusing that a film introduced by that douchebag Michael Eisner was allowed to mention Lucifer as many times as this movie does. The fat guy's there to tell the dad that he stands to be promoted, but he'd have to move, and he'd rather stay in Lucifer Falls. The daughter runs into the house, claiming she saw Mr. Boogedy. Her family mocks her, because they got rid of him, despite Mr. Boogedy revealing to them that they didn't at the end of the first movie. They go outside to prove she's crazy, and by that I mean the little kid throws a rock at a cat, and they all just laugh at the daughter for being a coward. Why did the family suddenly become a bunch of jackasses?

We cut to some city council thing where Eugene Levy is trying to dick over the Lucifer Falls carnival because he's angry that years later he's going to be stuck doing some of the worst films I've ever sat through in my life. Honestly, I'd be pretty god damn angry too if I starred in The Man too. He gets oneupped by Carleton Davis who inspires the town to tell Eugene Levy to suck it, so they're gonna continue with the carnival anyway, because fuck the American Pie sequels. So far the pacing in this movie is a bit awkward, but it's at least not as bad as the first film. This is, of course, because for some reason the second Mr. Boogedy film is 1h40m whereas the original was only 45m.

The parents check out some stuff for the carnival and meet up with some crazy witchwoman that implies that Mr. Boogedy isn't defeated. We also get more of Carleton being wacky, which keeps making me think back to Stephen King's IT again. Seriously, it's the same fucking character played by the same fucking actor. How has he not told his kids the story about he and his friends made a train with some girl and defeated a spider-like eldritch abomination in a sewer? It turns out Eugene Levy is just the town jerk who runs an old timey general store, and seems to hate everyone. The kids try and put up a poster for the carnival, but after they notice that he seems to have Mr. Boogedy's outfit on a coat rack, he rips their poster up and sends them out on their way.

The two boys of the family wander about at night until they end up in a spooky, fog machine covered graveyard where they run into Mr. Boogedy, who kinda reminds me of a larger version of Yogurt from Spaceballs now that I think about it, and the ghost boy from the first film tries to warn them. But, it's all a dream! They wake up and try to tell their dad, but their dad is for some reason super skeptical even after the events of the first film, and even though the fucking first movie ends with Mr. Boogedy revealing to him that he isn't defeated. Seriously, fuck this writing.

After some more drama with Eugene Levy being a whiny jerk, the kids wander back to the graveyard where they run into Vincent Schiavelli of all people. He shows them the grave of Mr. Boogedy, and for some reason they decide to take him to go see their parents. I guess if I bumped into Vincent Schiavelli I'd also want to go bragging to everyone about it. We get a seance with some stereotypical fortune teller, the random privateer guy from the start of the movie, Vincent Schiavelli, and the kids. ...and they use a fucking plastic toy kid's telephone in it to talk to the dead, seriously. Anyway this somehow ends up unleashing Mr. Boogedy from the statue on his headstone.

Carleton wanders around outside with a flashlight thinking that Eugene Levy is behind all of what's been going on, only to be attacked and possessed by Mr. Boogedy and told to find his cloak. Meanwhile his daughter is repeatedly writing in her journal that nobody ever listens to her, just as her dad passes by the door, hovering in midair on his back while making chattering noises and laughing like a maniac, because Mr. Boogedy sucks at subtlety, but he tries to act normal around the mother, so only the kids become suspicious.

The kids go to the privateer guy to try to tell him about what all's going on, which he tries to claim is normal at first just because their dad -is- strange. I don't care how strange someone is, strange people do not just levitate and glow green. We find out that Mr. Boogedy is after Carleton's wife. He gets her to dress as a puritan, repeatedly calls her Marion, and then... ...makes himself super fat for some reason while repeating Boogedy. Seriously. He inflates like the fucking blueberry girl from the original Willy Wonka movie and then starts flying around like he's Baron Harkonnen or something, making his wife realize something is going on.

The family brings over Mr. Privateer and the fortune teller chick who tells everyone shit they already knew, doesn't provide any help or anything useful to the movie, and then leaves. Well, that was pretty pointless. Later that night, Carleton, while possessed, finds Mr. Boogedy's cloak in the basement and puts it on, making him completely glow green. Cue him chasing them around the house, flying while repeating "boogedy boogedy" over and over while Eugene watches from outside, not finding any of this weird. Meanwhile, a man in a gorilla suit carrying a briefcase sneaks into the house! The plot thickens!

The possessed Carleton corners the family and the gorilla in a bedroom, where he begins covering everything in flowers and shooting bubbles out for some reason, in a scene that maybe I'm imagining because this movie has eaten away at what was left of my sanity. This is gonna turn out to be like Candle Cove and I've just been staring at a blank screen this entire time, isn't it? Well, Carleton is no longer possessed due to the actions of the gorilla, who it turns out is the fat guy they pranked earlier in the movie. They decide to burn the cloak once and for all to prevent this from ever happening again, but Eugene Levy is a ninja and somehow walked into the bedroom, grabbed the coat, and got out of the room and down the road all within about two minutes without anyone noticing. How did a man that skilled get stuck appearing in awful movies?

The next day at the carnival, we get the scariest thing across both movies: Vincent Schiavelli with a ventriloquist dummy. Seriously, this is unsettling as fuck. It reminds me of the minor character he played in Batman Returns, y'know, the organ grinder with the monkey. Eugene Levy shows up wearing Mr. Boogedy's robe and whines at Carleton about how since he's come to town nobody cares about him, and how he used to cloak to do it. The family offers to be his friend, but he decides they're lying, but then Mr Boogedy shows up and demands his cloak back!

Possessed Eugene Levy uses his green lightning powers to make a bunch of Halloween decorations that were totally not obviously just people in costume come to life and wander the carnival, including a werewolf, a pig-nosed vampire, and... some safari guy! How scary! Possessed Eugene Levy then heads towards the cemetary where he gives the statue of Mr. Boogedy its cloak back, causing Mr. Boogedy to completely return from the dead in physical form, as... Yogurt in a pilgrim costume mixed with the evil judge from that god awful Dan Akroyd Chevy Chase movie that escapes my name at the moment. Also, there's something hilarious about seeing Carleton, yknow, Stanley from IT, in a clown costume.

Mr. Boogedy heads over to the carnival where he starts shooting stuff with green lightning that uses stock lasergun sound effects that are corny even by classic Battlestar Galactica standards, and generally just causing chaos. He then takes over Carleton's wife, who I feel I need to point out is wearing The Bride's hair as a wig, err, that is, The Bride from Bride of Frankenstein. Because they had to make the title a bit more literal.

The remaining family members, Eugene Levy, and fat guy in gorilla suit meat back up with the privateer and fortune teller to hold an emergency seance, which summons the ghost of the little kid from the beginning and tells Carleton to use a key he has on the statue of Mr. Boogedy in order to get his wife back. Doing this opens up a portal, but Mr. Boogedy appears with Carleton's wife to say that it's too late. Mr. Boogedy turns out to be a retard though, because Carleton's daughter manages to trick him by offering herself up instead, and then running away after he lets go of her mother, allowing them to trap Mr. Boogedy in the portal. ...seriously. That was fucking retarded.

Bride of Boogedy is pretty awful compared to the first film. It's an hour longer, but it's a lot less entertaining, a lot less funny, and most of what makes it longer is just pointless filler. Still, if you liked the first, go ahead and watch it anyway. You can always probably just find
something better to watch I guess, but both movies aren't the worst thing to be on Disney Channel during the 90's, and you have nothing better to do on the big series of tubes we call the internet, besides maybe read things that are written in bold.

1 comment:

  1. I loved this movie as a kid! Awesome synopsis!!