"Mr. Jingles" DVD
Well, folks, the Killer
Clown subgenre of horror, made so popular by Stephen King's "IT",
has finally hit rock bottom. And rock bottom is currently populated
by "Mr. Jingles", a killer clown feature that never should
have left the circus.
So what we have here plotwise is the story of a clown. And, of course,
it's an evil clown—only this time, for a little variety, it’s
a clown that becomes evil eventually. An innocent man was sent to
prison for a crime he didn't commit, and when he got out, not surprisingly,
he was really rather upset…and a little bit insane.
So insane, in fact, that he became Mr. Jingles, the Dark Clownish
The worst part is, I'm not kidding. Mr. Jingles' mission is to kill
everyone involved with putting him behind bars. And seeing as how
he was innocent to begin with, he's basically just turned vigilante.
That and he’s also been studying up on that great generic
horror movie force, “the occult”.
All we need now is for someone to crank out the Necronomicon and
we’ll be completely lodged in cliché country.
Though this finer point is easily overshadowed by the fact that
he's basically just a clown on a killing spree. But he's missed
a target, and watching her family get chopped up into little bits
by a giggling, screaming clown did a whole lot of damage to the
little girl's psyche, and so she's been in an institution for several
years. Now she's back...and so is Mr. Jingles.
And man, is this ever hokey. Check out the effects at the three
minute fifty one second mark. It's not exactly convincing to watch
someone's "intestines" fall out through a huge bulge in
their sweatshirt. And the trick with the axes at six minutes twenty
four seconds. They didn't even try to conceal the fact that they
didn't have budget or skill enough to pull this off--they just cut
away and let the blood run down the actor's face. And what was with
that shot at seven minutes? Gunfire now sounds like clicks? And
there isn't even a muzzle flash! I could keep going, folks, but
I think you get the picture here. This is truly amateur hour. I'm
insulted just having witnessed it. And believe me when I tell you
that I'll be insulted plenty more times throughout "Mr. Jingles"
by horrible effects and copout cutaways designed to cover up the
fact that they have neither the budget nor the skill to actually
pull off anything they try here.
Even better is the dialogue. I spent most of the first six minutes
laughing at the horrific lines that Mr. Jingles had to spew out,
especially that truly godawful knock-knock joke. Check out the twelve
minute mark, where a bunch of stoners get to talk about the Mr.
Jingles killings. And it only gets better at nineteen minutes thirteen
seconds, where some guy rants at his parents' graves. First he says,
"The only thing you ever left me was a bunch of unpaid bills".
He follows that up with "The only thing you ever left me was
an alcoholic gene." Well, which only thing did they leave you
there, champ? Was it a bunch of unpaid bills or an alcoholic gene?
Was it BOTH? Well damn, then I guess they didn't ONLY leave you
either if they left you both!
The ending is where pretty much all of the action takes place, though
it's still pretty slim on the acting. And pretty slim on the logic,
too. In fact, I'm pretty hard pressed to name a situation that makes
less sense than the last fifteen minutes of Mr. Jingles.
The special features include audio options, English and Spanish
subtitles, and trailers for "Mr. Jingles", "Komodo
vs. Cobra", "The Butcher", "Santeria: The Soul
Possessed", and "After Sundown".
All in all, "Mr. Jingles" is the most godawful lump of
tripe I've had the displeasure of watching in a good long while.
Although in my case, a good long while may be the last couple weeks.
It's still pretty lousy. Stuffed to the gills with trite effects,
feeble dialogue, and plot holes big enough to stuff fifty clowns
into, "Mr. Jingles" is less a circus act and more something
left on the bottom of the elephant cage.
Directed by Tommy Brunswick
Written by Todd Brunswick
Starring Kelli Jensen, Jessica Hall, Rudolph C. Hatfield, John Anton
Produced by Tommy Brunswick, Todd Brunswick
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