It’s time to cover the Munchies and the Hobgoblins movies!
Munchies is just an appetizer. It comes from a time in the 80s when there was no longer any Fantasy Island or The Love Boat graveyard for has-been celebrities, so famous faces that couldn’t get a job started doing horror movies. This time around it’s Harvey Korman! Wahoo! And he plays two parts!
Harvey and his son are archaeologists who find a small creature in a cave. It’s a Munchie! So they take Munchie home (he dresses like a Jawa) and things seem great. But then Harvey’s slimy brother comes along with his cute dirtbag sidekick. When the sidekick plays a game of cat and mouse with Munchie, there’s an accident and Munchie gets wet. Guess what happens next.
The Munchies shoot guns, drive cars, deal out one-liners, flip the bird, check out babes in the water (and steal their bathing suits), and eventually, attack a miniature golf course. Yeah. Let’s move on to the main course.
Hobgoblins is the epitome of old school cheesy 80s horror. The synth score is awesome, the little Hobgoblin puppets (who look more like Munchies than Gremlins) are always drenched in eerie green and pink lights, and there are performances by a new wave band called The Fontanelles. They released only one vinyl 45 RPM that has a couple of their songs from this movie. Great stuff.
The plot is perfectly low-budget 80s horror. This old security guard at a movie studio tells his new young employee that he should never go in the vault. So once the kid goes in the vault and unleashes the Hobgoblins, they go right to the house where his friends are having a movie night and dancing in total 80s style to a track by The Fontanelles. My favorite of the bunch is a cute military guy in a camouflage tank top.
The best scene is when the kids are attacked by Hobgoblins…and hop around the room struggling with stuffed animal Hobgoblins. It doesn’t matter how bad a movie like this is. It’s just so good because it’s so 80s and makes me feel like I’ve come home (and it blows away Munchies).
The one rule is, Hobgoblins are attracted to light. See? An original twist instead of a total Gremlins rip-off! The danger is that the Hobgoblins fulfill your biggest fantasy and then kill you. Only thing is, there’s not much in the way of deaths here. The young security guard is totally on it, interrupting his friends’ fantasies, which eventually leads to a punk rock club where The Fontanelles are performing…but the Hobgoblins become the headliners! It’s your typical hokey low-budget ending for a direct-to-VHS 80s movie about little pains in the ass.
HOBGOBLINS 2 (2009)
20 years later and the Hobgoblins are back…and so are all the original characters. Although, they’re played by different actors—and the military guy in the camouflage tank top is even hotter. So basically, the guy from a Hobgoblins movie gives me the Munchies.
While the character names are the same and the old man character from the first film is in a looney bin because he blew up the movie studio at the end of the first movie (which points to this as a direct sequel), the plot acts as if the kids never met him.
This time, the old man informs the kids that the way to bring back the Hobgoblins is to say “Hobgoblins” three times. So once someone says Hobgoblins three times, this essentially becomes a remake of the original. The kids get together to watch movies and dance to new wave music—the movie is made to look like its taking place in the 80s, and they do a really good job of it (even though they watch DVDs instead of VHS tapes).
There are plenty of Hobgoblin attacks this time, and there’s a new rule; you need to face your biggest fear to get rid of the Hobgoblins. There’s more stuffed animal wrestling, pink and green lighting abounds, and the cheesy plot feels like genuine 80s direct-to-VHS garbage even though its 2000s direct-to-DVD garbage. This is probably one of the best re-enactments of 80s low-budget horror I’ve ever seen. This is how you do a 20-year anniversary sequel right.