The result of $135 and a home video camera
Jay | USA | 07/11/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The year is 1988 and aspiring writer/director Rick Sloane feels he has created the film that will finally be the one to get him noticed. The film is Hobgoblins and yes it did win him notoriety. Unfortunately for Rick the notoriety he longed for would only come from cast Mystery Science Theater 3000 and their loyal b loving fans as they tore it to shreds for an hour and a half. I have seen both versions of this film, the regular & MST3K version, and found the regular version nearly unwatchable. The MST3K version however is a sheer masterpiece so that's the review I'm going with here (hence the 4 star rating).
The film, if you can call it that, starts out with a young security guard who just picked up the graveyard shift at a studio. His security mentor happens to be the 95 year old security master McCreedy, with Lee Marvin eyebrows, who will teach him the ropes to build a successful $5 an hour career. His major lesson is do not open a certain vault, which the young apprentice does, unleashing the devilish hobgoblin hand puppets. Once loose the hobgoblins hypnotize their prey allowing them to live out their fantasies and somehow kill you during the delusion. The only hope is to capture them before dawn or somehow they will destroy mankind. Not sure how since they can't move on their own, but ok we'll go with it.
To sum it up the film in itself is simply a disaster. I always say how much I love low budget b films but this on it's own is just too bad for words. However the Mystery Science Theater version is supremely hilarious and is one of my favorite things to watch. The commentary is spot on and they recreate the unwatchable film into something you will love. So I recommend Hobgoblins only if you can get your hands on the MST3K version."
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 08/06/2010
(1 out of 5 stars)
"DISCLAIMER: I hate "Hobgoblins" with the passion of a thousand exploding suns.
It's kind of like "Gremlins," except it's not funny, not cute, not exciting, and the creatures are ridiculous low-budget puppets that just sit around cackling. Pretty much the only way this movie is tolerable is if you get together with a bunch of friends, drink a lot, and make fun of it in a darkened room, "Mystery Science Theater 3000" style.
Kevin (Tom Bartlett) takes a guard job at a disused movie studio, in the hopes of impressing his whiny girlfriend Amy (Paige Sullivan). His supervisor Mr. McCreedy (Jeffrey Culver) warns him to never go into certain sections of the studio, but of course he does -- and he ends up releasing a bunch of grotesque alien "hobgoblins" on the world.
And of course, the hobgoblins all head RIGHT to the house where Kevin's friends are having a very tame party, and start trying to hypnotize them into killing themselves. No, we never find out WHY they do that, they just DO. And when Amy is hypnotized into becoming a stripping skank at Club Scum, her friends all rush out to rescue her.
Yeah, that pretty much sums up the plot. "Hobgoblins" is pretty much a disaster from the first scenes, in which we're treated to a guard's fantasies of performing rock'n'roll in front of an... empty auditorium. Yeah, pretty low budget in this movie.
After that, everything goes dramatically downhill, as we're treated to nonsensical fight scenes (the infamous rake battle), stupid dialogue ("Must be a new dance... pretty kinky"), giant plotholes (apparently having your whole body engulfed in flames just leaves you with a few arm abrasions) and just... general badness. I mean, what kind of antagonists are cackling alien "hobgoblins" who just sit there and cackle? Sure they can hypnotize you into dying, but we never know WHY they do it.
And the end is the world part -- that is when Rick Sloane decides, "Eff continuity, logic and plausibility! I want BIG BOOMS!" As a result, the last few scenes in this movie (which seem to take HOURS) are just one long string of random explosions. And no, we never find out where the bombs come from! They're just there! There's no sense in it all! Suddenly there's just bombs everywhere and they blow up and take the logic with them.
And the characters aren't any better, really -- they basically consist of a loser, a prude, a loser, a slut, and a thickheaded jerk. All of them are obnoxiously two-dimensional, and the closest we have to character development is Amy deciding to become the shallow sex-mad hairsprayed slut she secretly longs to be, just like her buddy Daphne. Yeah... whatever.
"Hobgoblins" is one of those movies that leaves you sitting in the bathtub, sobbing hysterically as you try to wash away the residue of stupidity. Unless you have friends and lots of alcohol nearby, avoid this one like the plague."