Friday, October 30, 2009


(1984) ***

I would be shocked if there was one person on the blog who has not seen Gremlins, so I imagine a summary is not necessary, but I’m scared of what JPX might do if I don’t provide one, so here it is. A traveling salesman, looking for a unique gift for his son, purchases a little creature called a mogwai at a Chinese shop. We are told early on that with a mogwai comes a lot of responsibility. There are three rules that must be strictly followed. 1) keep the mogwai away from bright light, 2) do not get it wet, and 3) for the love of god do not let it eat after midnight. It’s not surprising that all three rules are immediately broken. One mogwai becomes several that soon turn into the lethal yet hysterical green gremlins anxious to wreak havoc.

I thought it would be fun to see Gremlins again after so many years, but watching it was not an easy task. I borrowed a pretty scratched up copy from the library. When I initially inserted it into my laptop’s DVD player nothing happened. I couldn’t even eject it because it wasn’t registering that a DVD was inside. I was mortified at the thought of having to visit the Apple store so they could remove a Gremlins disc. Any other movie would have been less embarrassing, except probably for porn. Luckily I got it working, but then it skipped a bit. I missed a few minutes here and there, and had to watch some parts in slow motion and without volume.

Overall, I was surprised at how entertained I still was. The film is often described as scary and funny, but I only saw the humor. Actually, I’m not sure I ever found it particularly frightening as a kid either. It certainly made me laugh though. I particularly love when the Gremlins go out Christmas caroling, and I was also amused at the police officers complete avoidance. When they arrive at the scene to find one of their townsman getting clobbered by a couple of Gremlins, they immediately roll up their windows and drive away.

Now I expect everyone to come up with their best Gremlin haiku.


Trevor (Tami's friend) said...

Gremlins - A classic!
More of a Cristmas movie
Must be all that snow

But only 3 stars?
I would've gone much higher
Gizmo is too cute

As for the porn disc at the apple store - my cousin works at the "Genius Bar", and he told me about a celebrity that lives in the San Diego area that came in for work on his computer. The disc inside - "I f---ed your mother."

I shouldn't drop names, but I'm sure you wanna know which celebrity it was, right? Well, speaking of Gremlins, he was in a Steven Spielberg film in the 70's.

Jordan said...

I've never seen it! (So, be shocked)

Johnny Sweatpants said...

You should watch Part 2
Christopher Lee is in it
He's the fucking MAN

Whirlygirl said...

Jordan, that's funny because after I wrote it I had a thought that you might not have.

Whirlygirl said...

I was going to watch part two but I ran out of time.

HandsomeStan said...

Apple Employee: Yep, here's your problem. It seems you got a scratched-up disc stuck in here. Let me just eject it here...

Whirlygirl: (*cringing*)

Apple Employee: (pause) Get out of my store.

Jordan said...

Gremlins (like Cocoon and batteries not included and Goonies) is one of those movies that constantly irritated me because everyone thought it was a Spielberg movie, because evidently nobody can read and therefore they can't tell the difference between "Steven Spielberg Presents" at the top of the poster and "Directed by Steven Spielberg" at the bottom.

Trevor (Tami's friend) said...

Yeah, I think almost everything ever made by Amblin Entertainment got that label.

Trevor (Tami's friend) said...

And in the horror realm, I can't count how many times I've seen, "From the makers of The Grudge" or "From the creators of The Ring".

Jordan said...

Right! And it drove me nuts.

JORDAN: "What's your favorite Spielberg movie?"

IDIOT: "Why, The Goonies, of course."

JORDAN: "But he didn't do it. It's not a Spielberg movie."

IDIOT: (psychomotor collapse)

Jordan said...

Hey, Trevor, did you catch the final two comments on your Frighteners post?

Jordan said...

My issue's not with the "Spielberg Presents" label; that's legit. My issue's with people for whom the question of who directed the movie is so trivial that they can't bother to read a poster sufficiently carefully to find out.

Octopunk said...

I love Gremlins. It was due to this movie that the concept of black comedy was first explained to me. (Mostly for the "that's how I found out there's no Santa Claus" story.)

I'm not surprised you didn't find it scary, though.

Trevor (Tami's friend) said...

Jordan - yes, I did read those two comments from The Frighteners post. I'm glad we can shelve that topic and move on in Horrorthon - for which I'm sure we agree on over 95% of many other films.

Speaking of which - good job on The Marathon Man post. I was just in Central Park last weekend jogging around that reservoir, thinking about that film almost the whole time.