US movie (1985). Empire/Charles Band. Pr Jefery Levy. Exec pr Charles Band. Dir Luca Bercovici. Mufx John Carl Buechler, Mechanical & Makeup Imageries Inc. Screenplay Bercovici, Levy. Starring Michael Des Barres (Malcolm), Peter Liapis (Jonathan), Jack Nance (Wolfgang), Lisa Pelikan (Rebecca), Peter Risch (Grizzel), Tamara de Treaux (Greediguts). 84 mins. Colour.
In infancy Jonathan was saved by his medallion and at the cost of his mother's life from Human Sacrifice at the hands of his father Malcolm in a satanic ritual. Raised by grizzled family retainer Wolfgang, he inherits the decrepit ancestral pile on his father's ghastly demise, and moves into it with girlfriend Rebecca. Soon, dabbling in his father's grimoires (see Books), he develops luminous green eyes, calls up sundry Demons (a powerful pair, Grizzel and Greediguts, being dwarfish humanoids, the rest being cackling little Monsters, the Ghoulies) and resurrects Malcolm. Mayhem follows.
Band and Buechler made two attempts in 1985 to hitch onto the bandwagon of the Steven Spielberg/Joe Dante Gremlins (1984); G was the better, the other being Troll (1985), but is still poor. However, it attained enough popularity to spawn two sequels (both released direct to video), Ghoulies 2 (1987), in which the hairy little imps infest a carnival show, and Ghoulies 3 – Ghoulies Go to College (1991), which mixes soft-porn college-movie clichés into the usual formula. [JG]