The Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987)
Director: Rod Amateau
Starring: Anthony Newley, Mackenzie Astin & Katie Barberi
Released by: Scream Factory
Reviewed by Mike Kenny
Based on the popular Topps trading card series, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie centers on bullied teenager Dodger (Mackenzie Astin, The Facts of Life) who befriends the Kids after accidentally unleashing them from their magical trash can. In addition to causing mayhem and helping Dodger woo the fashionably feisty Tangerine (Katie Barberi, Every Witch Way), the Kids find themselves imprisoned at the State Home for the Ugly with Dodger and the crafty Captain Manzini (Anthony Newley, Oliver Twist) as their only hope.
Created to disgustingly parody the Cabbage Patch Kids phenomenon of the era, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie continues the vile hijinks of Ali Gator, Greaser Greg, Valerie Vomit, Foul Phil and the rest of the gang in their first and only big-screen leap. Performed by dwarf actors in bizarrely designed costumes, the Kids find themselves free from their trash can detention as they let loose of their manners and hygiene in their new environment. Following noisy shenanigans at the movies and drunken bar room brawls, the messy misfits look to help their teenage friend Dodger impress the “too cool for school” Tangerine with his fashion sensibilities while, getting even with his bully Juice. Attracting too much unwanted attention, the Kids find themselves admitted to the State Home for the Ugly alongside fellow inmates Santa Claus and Abraham Lincoln. Although marketed for children, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie left parents even more perplexed by the characters’ caca and poo poo humor that popularized the controversial cards.
Although devastatingly panned and tanking at the box-office, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie has resurfaced as a bonafide cult classic, enjoyed for its gross-out kiddie humor and over the top, paper thin narrative. While its abnormally constructed costume designs appear poor, their crude, unnatural appearance give the film its unusually appealing charm. Considered by many to be as tasteless as a stick of bubblegum, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie is unquestionably one of the weirder efforts to emerge from the gaudy 80s yet, signifies a compelling time where hilariously fun dreck of its kind was ushered into theaters for the enjoyment of children.
Scream Factory presents The Garbage Pail Kids Movie with a 1080p transfer, sporting a 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Appearing relatively soft, skin tones emerge naturally while select colors including, outdoor greenery and the eye-catching fashion choices of Tangerine and the Kids popping better than others. Faint specks and occasional vertical lines are noted while, black levels appear hazy and lacking an inkier presence. Meanwhile, detail is most pleasing in closeups of the off-putting Kids capturing their acne and snot infested faces nicely. Equipped with a DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mix, dialogue is serviceable with no noticeable interferences while, bar sequences and music inclusions offer mild boosts in quality. Crowned a Collector’s Edition, special features include, The Effects of the Garbage Pail Kids Movie (11:46) with new interviews from Special Makeup Effects Creator John Carl Buechler and Makeup Effects Artist Gino Crognale. In addition, On Set with 1st AD Thomas A. Irvine (6:22), The Artful Dodger: An Interview with Mackenzie Astin (27:16) and The Kids Aren’t All Right (21:21) with insight from Garbage Pail Kids performers Arturo Gil and Kevin Thompson are also included. Finally, the Theatrical Trailer (2:02) and a reversible cover art utilizing the original 1-sheet poster conclude the supplemental package.
Universally trashed since its debut, The Garbage Pail Kids Movie serves the appetites of B-movie purists who find enjoyment in its many quirks and unintentional head-shaking hilarity. Making suitable leaps from its standard definition days, Scream Factory treats this belch-inducing blunder like the gross gold it is with its supplemental package from Aine Leicht’s Cavetown Pictures being the major sell. Don’t let your uncontrollable body functions go to waste without the messiness of The Garbage Pail Kids Movie by your side!