Hey kids, it’s the Dash man! I just want to say thank you guys for being with me on my first year. I wish all of you and your families a Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukkah, a Happy Kwanzaa, a Happy Winter Solstice…just, Happy Holidays to everyone! Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m taking the month off. Sorry, I’m just not the biggest fan of the Christmas season and the last time I pushed myself to do Holiday-themed reviews, I nearly lost what was left of my sanity. I know what the title may suggests, but I’m a grown man. I can change my mind if I feel like it! So you guys go ahead and enjoy the most stressful time of the year, I’m booking the next flight to Florida and getting plastered! See you next year!
Damnit, Alexa Vega! That’s not fair and you know it! Fine, my Ghost Of Christmas Past. I’ll stay and do a few articles, but only because you made my childhood look good. So, so, so good! Ay Dios mío, Alexa! Muy caliente, mi pequeña estrella dulce! Ooh…wait, what was I reviewing again?
Oh yeah, that’s right. Why couldn’t you just buy your kids an Atari like the rest of the world?
‘Gremlins’ is a 1984 horror/comedy directed by Joe Dante. The film centers around an inventor’s son who receives a very strange yet unique Christmas gift from Chinatown; a small and cuddly creature called a Mogwai. However, the young man soon learns that bright lights and sunlight can hurt or even kill it, water can make one Mogwai multiply into several, and that feeding it after midnight can lead to…disastrous results. So of course, the guy breaks those three rules and the titular creatures turn the whole town into their hellish playground. Just in time for Christmas!
Upon its release, the film was a box office smash and met with a lot of positive reviews from critics. However, ‘Gremlins’ also met a lot of negative feedback from uptight and sensitive parents, complaining that the violence, the dark humor and the Gremlins themselves were too shocking and scary for their children…even though most of us watched and enjoyed the movie anyway. In fact, it was the content of this film and of Steven Spielberg’s ‘Indiana Jones & The Temple Of Doom’ that caused the MPAA to create the PG-13 rating. However, one question remains…is ‘Gremlins’ still the whimsically-dark Christmas classic?
Look, let’s just get right down to it. This is a creature feature. This is the kind of movie meant to show off the creature effects and nothing else. To be fair, however, the creature effects are amazing and can out-beat any CGI-infested blockbuster. You don’t necessarily need the best actors for this kind of movie. However, ‘Gremlins’ actually did go out of its way to cast some talented and recognizable actors imaginable. The film stars Zach Galligan as Billy Peltzer; the film’s main protagonist. Of course, we’re all familiar with Dick Miller who is literally in every movie(Seriously, look him up!), but we also have Phoebe Cates, Corey Feldman, Judge Reinhold and a bunch of other cameos from Steven Spielberg, Jerry Goldsmith(the film’s composer) and even Robby The Robot from 1956’s ‘Forbidden Planet’ just to name a few. You could literally play the ‘Gremlins’ Drinking game and you’ll pass out from the cameos alone.
Shut the hell up, Sansa! You’re ruining Christmas! Anyway, the acting is pretty good for the most part. But, let’s now focus on the real stars of this movie, the little Mogwais and Gremlins! I’m a grown man, and I still think Gizmo is the coolest and cutest thing to ever grace the silver screen! Not to mention the little guy is voiced by comedian Howie Mandel.
Then, there’s the Gremlins! These little bastards are what make the movie. I mean, sure it’s during Christmas and the Gremlins are causing property damage and killing people, BUT IT WAS AWESOME!
But, I’m getting sidetracked by all of the death and destruction. ‘Gremlins’ is one of the most Christmas-y films I’ve ever seen. Wait, is “Christmas-y” even a word? It is now! Once again, this movie is a send-up to older movies, so it’s problem to me that the town looks like one big set. I mean, seriously…even the dog gets into the spirit of it all!
This is one of my absolute favorite Christmas movies, no question! This is everything you could ever want from a creature feature. A simplistic yet fun storyline, lots of dark humor, likable characters, catchy score from Jerry Goldsmith and some downright impressive special effects. If you haven’t seen ‘Gremlins’ yet, or if you’ve enjoyed the satirically light-hearted ‘Gremlins 2’ and looking to see where it all began, you owe it to yourself to look this movie up. Go watch it now, you won’t regret it. However, if your TV, DVD/Bluray player or your internet connection starts acting funny…you know the routine.
Now if you excuse me, Christmas is coming a little early this year.
Mmm…until next time, Gotta Dash!
Written by Shane Moose
Gremlins(owned by Warner Bros. & Amblin Entertainment)
The Tomorrow People(owned by Berlanti/Plec, FremantleMedia North America, CBS Television Studios, Warner Bros. Television & Warner Bros. Television Distribution)
Game Of Thrones(owned by HBO, Television 360, Grok! Television, Generator Entertainment & Bighead Littlehead)
The Hunters(owned by Hallmark Channel & Walden Media)