Here we are in the middle of November, Halloween has passed and Christmas is coming, so what better film to watch than Gremlins. As its set during the festive period but with monsters, scary enough for any Halloween so fits in between.
We here at Barking Mad About Films love a creature feature and this 1984 classic is one of the best.
Written by Chris Columbus, who also wrote another Eighties classic The Goonies. However, he is possibly best known as the director of Mrs. Doubtfire; The First 2 Harry Potter and Home Alone films.
Brought to the screen from director Joe Dante, who had previously had creature feature success with: The Howling; Piranha and his segment of Twilight Zone: The Movie.
The story opens on inventor Randall (Hoyt Axton) Peltzer, searching for a unique present for his son Billy (Zach Galligan)
Ready to give up, he is taken to Mr Wing’s store in Chinatown, where amongst all the unique gifts, he spots Gizmo, a Mogwai. This cute creature is not for sale! A deal is done behind Mr Wing’s back by his grandson, who knows that they need the money.
The sale is subject to the fact that 3 rules must be followed:
Don’t ever get it wet
Keep it away from bright light
And no matter how must it cries, no matter how much it begs, NEVER, EVER feed it after midnight
Billy Peltzer absolutely loves his present but breaks the rules almost instantly! Blinding Gizmo with bright light, when taking a photo with a flash camera.
Needless to say, an accident occurs and Gizmo gets wet, which causes his to body to start bobbling and balls popping from his body, resulting in more Mogwai in the house.
These Mogwai however, are less calm than Gizmo, and cleverly chew through the alarm clock to trick Billy into feeding them after midnight. This results in the Mogwai going into cocoons, which is where they turn into the Gremlins.
The Gremlins cause absolute carnage to the town, Billy takes responsibility to stop them after they have attacked his mum (Frances Lee McCain) and wrecked their home.
With the help of his girlfriend Kate (Phoebe Cates) and Murray (Dick Miller) Futterman, they take on the gremlins and try to save Christmas.
This is a real Eighties classic and Horror/Comedy at its best, the film also caused uproar upon its UK release when it was granted a 15 certificate as the 12 did not exist which meant that possibly the majority of its target audience missed out. It was however, a huge hit, with various imitations quickly following, the likes of Munchies; Ghoulies; Troll and Critters
Gremlins even spawned a less successful sequel itself but we enjoyed it just as much. The film has a great following with numerous Mogwai and Gremlins merchandise ranges from plushes to action figures.
We have not seen the last of them yet either, as it has been announced that a remake/reboot is on the way, which we hope can bring back the magic again.
Are you a Gremlins fan? What would you like from the new film? We would love to hear from you here at Barking Mad About Films.
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