GHOUL SCHOOL (1990)
What’s It About: Two thugs accidentally release an ultimate evil into a high school’s water supply making anyone who drinks or swims in the water horrible, blood-thirsty demons. Now it’s up to two ne’er-do-well slackers to stop the evil horde from leaving the school and attacking the populous. Basically “Much Ado About Nothing” but set in a school and features demons. Also features some references to Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling.
Here are some of my observations as I watched the film:
- Special guest Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling! This wasn’t even remotely “special” back in 1990.
- The film begins with a lingering shot of literally nothing happening outside a school for at least 25 seconds. That’s a whole lot of nothing.
- Now we’re watching a drunk janitor in his “room” making lots of tired, drunk sounds. There’s a bed in this room. Does this janitor actually live in the school? Do the filmmakers think janitors live in schools?
- I don’t know what the point of that janitor scene was since it just ends with him falling off the bed and the next scene is a guy entering a house.
- The word “faggot” was just uttered by these three dorks about a dozen times for virtually no reason. Oh, the pre-PC 90s.
- Now the word “jerk-off” has been uttered about half a dozen times by these two new dorks regarding the principal of the school. Vocabulary is not this screenwriter’s forte.
- Hallway interior – End of school day. Long shot of kids walking down hallway. End scene.
- Now this next scene is really important. The principal and some other gent are on the phone trying to make plans and the other gent is just too busy.
- Then Jackie Martling strolls into the office of the other gent, Joe Franklin, and just tells about 20 lame terrible jokes. Seriously it has nothing to do with this movie. Just an excuse to have Martling in the film. (Side note: I had to look up who Joe Franklin was and learned he’s an old comedian. Seeing as I had to look this up means the cameo was lost on 98.9% of your target audience)
- So the two “jerk-off” fellas from earlier are now torturing the janitor asking where something is. The one fella finds a hidden door and they kill the janitor. Inside this empty hidden room is a switch with red and green buttons. The one guy asks what these do and without waiting for an answer just presses the red button. After a painfully slow and boring series of unnecessary shots all the water in the school starts to flow; like the water fountains. But why would the red button activate anything? Usually red designates stop on a switch, right?
- So the water in the school swimming pool was infected with whatever the red button activated and turned a few swimmers into demons of some sort. I guess they were demons, it was hard to tell with the lamest make up in the history of cinema on their faces.
- The special effects of these demon kids tearing off the limbs of the swim coaches is basically fish entrails and other chum in a stuffed shirt. I know this because you actually see whole pieces of fish being torn apart. It’s downright hilarious.
- Now we meet a heavy metal band (The Blood Sucking Ghouls) head by Blade who is struggling getting a gig at the high school. Is it that hard to get booked at a high school?! How low in your career do you have to be to lose out getting booked by a local high school? If you basically lose the chance to play there you may as well hang up the ‘ol six-string.
- I failed to notice earlier that our two “heroes” are wearing Jackie the Joke Man themed t-shirts like “I stumped Jackie The Joke Man” and “A Safe Distance From Genius.” I’m just shaking my head.
- Now it looks like the high school basketball team is wearing the same kind of shirts! Did Jackie Martling demand that a shirt of his be in every shot of this film for him to cameo for no effing reason?
- These secretaries are discussing rock n’ roll like its a brand new invention. “What? You don’t like that Rock n’ Roll?” Was this movie made on planet Earth?
- One of the demons gets electrocuted by touching a TV while a movie’s playing. Why? Because reasons.
- Holy shit! This movie was made in Wayne New Jersey! Not far from my alta mater Montclair State University. One of the basketball players is wearing a Pizza 46 t-shirt! We got pies there all the time! (side note: it was probably the worst pizza we ever ate but they delivered to the campus and we were too drunk to care half the time.)
- “Just water Joe. We bottle it ourselves. There’s a natural spring in the boiler room.” hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahhahahahahahahahaa.
- Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. Sorry, that was one hysterical joke. Did Jackie write that one? Only a Joke Man can come up with that kind of brilliant line.
- The demons usually just tear and eat their victims but in this one instance they whack an ax into this one guy’s crotch a few times. Why? Reasons. Dumb reasons.
- Our heroes are very overly concerned about the band’s well-being. I didn’t realize they even knew the band was there.
- If one were to have a drinking game to take a swig at every Joke Man reference sighting in this film, one would be hospitalized for alcohol poisoning by now.
- So besides Pizza 46 t-shirts the other half of the basketball team wear other pizzeria establishment t-shirts. I’m thinking this film was funded by Jackie the Joke Man and local North Jersey pizzerias. It’s a pizza shit* is what this film is. *Thanks for the joke Brian. At least someone is thinking funny. Eat your heart out Jackie The Joke Man.
- I hate to nitpick here but why isn’t anyone leaving the fucking school to save themselves or to get fucking professional help?
- At this point I’m not even going to question how they found a board and some nails to barricade the auditorium doors from the demons. But it’s driving me crazy how inept this one kid is at hammering a simple nail.
- Now the cops arrive. Why? Just randomly apparently since no one ever called them.
- So the only way out of the school is through the air duct? And it’s the brightest lit air duct I’ve ever seen.
- There’s a Crom-damned Jackie “The Joke Man” sticker in the air duct!
- The girl in the air duct makes it out to the roof and says, “I can’t believe it, the whole city!” Now they don’t show us what she sees. I first took it as the whole city is swarming by demonoids. Or maybe she was just surprised that she can see the whole city from the roof of the school.
- The 4 survivors stumble out of the school’s front doors and we hear “Fire!” From an bullhorn and the screen fades to white while we hear gunfire and explosions. Was this a deliberate Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid homage ending or did they just give up or run out of money to finish the film. I’d bet my life that it was the latter.
Scare Volume: Volume? What’s the opposite of deafening?
Gore Volume: If I have to give the film some high remarks it would be in the gore department. While it wasn’t really well done enough to recommend, they did at least try to make a gory movie. A for effort I guess.
Nudity Volume: Jackie The Joke Man runs around buck naked in every scene.
Best Scene: I still love the scene where the principal says the school bottles their own water from a natural spring in the boiler room. I hate to mock the mentally challenged but whatever doofus wrote that thinking that would make sense in a movie deserves a swift hard slap across the back of the head.
Worst Scene: This movie will insult and injure even the basic intelligent human being. Every scene will make you want to scream. You will demand your money back and you probably didn’t even pay for it. There’s so many unnecessary scenes you can take your pick but having Jackie the Joke Man and Joe Franklin featured in your movie for no other purpose than to tell each other jokes is mind-numbingly idiotic. They weren’t even decent jokes either.
How ’bout the Tunes: The Blood Sucking Ghouls play one song which is a long dull instrumental. And the band in the movie isn’t even sync’ed up correctly with the music so it looks terrible too. What more can you expect in this shitty movie. There’s no clip on youtube to even show you this pointless instrumental.
Band Rating: Based on the one song they play and their look, the Blood Sucking Ghouls will have to get a Shit Sandwich!
Overall: This one was a real tough watch. While it surely didn’t take itself too seriously and tried to play for schlock value it, sadly it’s too painfully dumb and awkwardly made to be any good in any regard. It’s so inept in every instance that it’s downright sufferable. It’s a shame because the premise isn’t bad either. It could’ve been like a Rio Bravo or Assault on Precinct 13 with a mismatch group of students, teachers and heavy metal band members and groupies trying to stop a demonic epidemic from exiting the school and getting to the city or something. If only it had better writing, acting, directing, costumes, set design, editing, sound, camera operators, lighting, gaffers, best boys, assistant directors, continuity, dolly grips, props, hair and makeup, soundtrack and catering.
Score: 2 Stumps For Jackie The Joke Man (out of 10)