rufus rates it:
Community rates it:
153 of 306 readers found this review helpful.
A movie could be so bad it's good and be deemed a cult classic. Hell, look at Attack Of The Killer Tomatoes. Frankly, the movie is horrible. Something about it though (maybe that catchy ass theme) makes you laugh and smile at how bad it is. On the other hand a movie could be lifeless and bad. This doesn't make it good or a cult classic, but just a horribly bad movie. Need an example of this logic? Well, you're in luck because I have such an example of a movie that had some of the slowest pacing issues, plot holes, pointless scenes, etc. to talk about.
Ghoul School has came out throughout the years by many distributors. The most recent is a re-release by Camp Motion Pictures on their Retro 80s Horror Collection. Now, I love the idea of great 80s horror getting it's due. That was my absolute favorite era of horror movies. Unfortunately, this one should have been left behind with the beta disks.
The story boils down to some low lives sneaking into the school when the day ends and ties up the janitor. Seems they are looking for some hidden money. What they stumble upon is a weird room in the back where they unleash some type of gas. You can only assume it's gas because of the coughing made by the two hooligans and the hissing sound surrounding them. Other than that it is invisible. Maybe it was invisible snakes choking them out? Again, I'll assume it is gas.
The gas gets into the water stream of the school. We follow this through scenes of endless tubes also. The scene seems to take about 10 minutes. So we now know that the water is contaminated. Uh-oh! The swim team is practicing and there is a hose squirting out tap water that keeps the pool filled. I shit you not Bums. There is a thin green garden hose lying on the edge of the pool that keeps the pool filled. Without that constantly running, who knows what the power of condensation would do? Anyways, all of the swim team turns blue and grows teeth. They proceed to low budgetly attack the two swim coaches.
Now school's out, but a few people are still in there. The two movie nerd heroes are in the AV room watching a bootleg horror movie, and a Heavy Metal band is practicing in the auditorium for an upcoming dance. The two heroes in the movie worked in the flick for some reason. They were your stereotypical nerdy heroes that littered numerous 80s horror flicks but again they worked for the era. The band on the other hand was a site to see. Some of the most truly horrendous fake playing that I have ever scene. The music and the instrument playing were absolute nowhere together. Was this a joke or bad editing and acting? Either or, it is a sight to behold.
At the end it is all up to these few to stop the ghoul army and make it out of the school safe. This all leads up to a freeze frame ending. Ouch. The story is so simple that it takes a truly bad movie to still throw plot holes in it.
Here is my major issue with the movie, other than just saying it is horrible. Every scene goes on for minutes longer than they needed to. The opening scene with the janitor just didn't know when to end. The basketball practice that never ended became so pointless that you just shake your head sadly. Like many low budget movies the kills seemed to also take forever. To give you an example of this, when the swim coach is getting torn apart you can see the balloons that are holding in the fake blood. It looked like some tentacles or engine hose being torn from the body. Now, I'm not an expert on the bodies inner anatomy, but I'm sure that it doesn't look like that. Frankly though there were moments of bad practical effects that were a lot of fun.
If all that stretching out and slow pacing mentioned already isn't bad enough, Jackie The Joke man Martlin crashed the pace to a halt. We get what seems like forever of him spouting off jokes. Good or bad is not in question. It is the fact that the whole scene of him was absolutely pointless. Since he helped produce the film I guess, he seems to be in every scene like a bad commercial. One of our heroes has his shirt on. Some of the basketball team are also wearing his "Stump the Joke man" shirts. While crawling in the air vents the character Roxy (played by Martling's then wife Nancy Sirianni) comes upon a "Stump the Joke man" sticker. Come on already!
Now I am being harsh on this film, I know. I think the reasoning for it is I expected more. Sure a movie can be bad, but it can also be fun. For proof of this just watch the promotional teaser. The teaser (used to create a buzz and financing for the Ghoul School movie) had more fun and better makeup than the finished product.
On the plus side Camp Motion Pictures throws in a smorgasbord of extras. Much more than this movie deserves, but for that it has earned itself some props. Overall the movie is very bad. There were some moments that brought a low budget smile to my face, but in the long run I was bored to tears. Even though the effects were fun in their bad self, that alone just wasn't enough to save this one. With the pacing as slow as it was, and the editing and story all over the place, I can only give this movie a half can for the flick and a whole can for the extras.
Added: Tuesday, January 30, 2007
[ Did you find this review helpful? Yes No ]
[ Back to reviews index ]
Want to comment on this review?
Register here for a free user account, and you'll be able to.