Sunday, 30 October 2016

Killer Klowns From Outer Space

There once was a young boy who spent many an evening in the video rental store his Mum worked in watching movies in a backroom. His Mum was a conscientious lady who would always check the video boxes to ensure he only watch appropriate content. Unfortunately she didn't check inside the boxes and that was how, smuggled inside a copy of The Jetsons Meet The Flinstones, the boy came to watch Killer Klowns From Outer Space.

I've never forgotten that movie. Though meant as a comedy I saw it only as a terrifying horror remembering for a long time the cotton candy corpse cocoons and the girl in the balloon. I watched it again on Youtube a few years ago and considered it a bit blah.

I watched it again last night in far better, legal, format. And I have to say, it has really held up well. The music is actually pretty good, the Klowns themselves look amazing considering the movie was made 30 years ago and the acting is vastly superior to almost every other b-movie made since (just look at how bad Hobgoblins was!).

And there's some genuine creepy stuff in this movie. The popcorn creatures (again holding up well), the cotton candy and the drinking straws, the ventriloquist act with the police officer and the Klown trying to entice the little girl out of the fast food restaurant.

Two things let it down:

1) the underpinning of the whole movie of having Killer Klowns from Outer Space. All they needed to do was imply, as done at points with Stephen King's IT, that they only saw the aliens as clowns because the puny human brain can't conceive of what they really are. When we see kill someone with acidic cream pies, we're just IMAGINING that as to conceive of what really happened was too horrific. That would've added a much-needed dimension of creepiness and believability.
2) the comedy is shit. I mean, REALLY shit. The Klown kapers are one thing, but the Terenzi brothers nearly ruin the movie. And they unbelievably survive. There's no justice in this movie.

But overall it really holds up. In the hands of the right people the proposed sequel or a reboot could actually be genuinely terrifying or even funny! This is one b-movie that only gets better with age.