Oh, Cheezy Flicks, how we love you. No other company seems to be made for us as much as you are. With everything from Slashers featuring erotic cow milking, to Nazisploitatin, to outer space epics that are..not so epic, Cheezy flicks knows it’s cheese and is unapologetic in it’s marketing strategy. If you buy something from Cheezy Flicks, you know what you’re getting and we love them for that. When They got in touch offering up a little known classic from my childhood that I hadn’t seen since I was under five, I jumped for joy, rounded up my 11 year old son Caleb and popped in Jack The Giant Killer..but was it the breathtaking, fast paced action packed epic I remembered it as?…Weeeeeeeell..Not quite.
JACK THE GIANT KILLER Introduces Jack,the world’s oldest farmhand (Seriously, this dude has to be at least 40) who gets himself in the good graces of the king by saving his daughter from a giant monster that an evil wizard named pendragon set loose on her. The Princess and Jack fall deeply in love but Pendragon isn’t done, with the help of a double agent spy, a group of “witches” and a mad assistant, Pendragon unleashes an endless flood of monsters before successfully kidnapping the princess. Thankfully Jack is also not alone, joining him on jis journey are boy pirate Peter, a viking, and a leprechaun..that’s right a motherfucking leprechaun..
TAKE THAT WIZARD OF OZ! Will Jack succeed in his quest? Of course he will but will you succeed in getting through this without pissing your pants with laughter? I highly doubt it!
It’s always gotten to me that so many people shit on little movies like this one but celebrate films like The Wizard Of Oz like it’s an untouchable classic. I mean, yes, of course The Wizard Of Oz is classic..but it’s also dated, silly and let’s face it, cheesy as fuck. This movie deserves that same kind of reverence. Yes it’s chalk full of ineptitude and it’s hysterically off kilter..but holy fuck, how can you not love a movie that boasts a puppet magically turning into a giant two eyed version of the cyclops from The Odyssey, going on a rampage and destroying things with ease only to be thwarted by that scorn of all giant monsters..a doorway that’s too small!
Or how’s about a Leprechaun in a bottle turning a skeleton arm into a whip that can be used against an army of…slow moving “dragon guards”..I mean come now, what’s more terrifying than extremely slow moving guys in cheap armor moving in unison? How’s about a monster fight between a two headed version of our biclops and a cross between the Loch ness Monster and a squid?
Oh..and our witches? Are they hooked nosed hags? Nope, they’re extras from Troll 2 (the Goblins not the witch) and a miniature Godzilla who swallowed a fire extinguisher and has the power of over exposing the film and dimming the lighting!
Even our Wizard is epic..Does he look like Merlin? Nope..It’s motherfucking Doctor Strange! I dare you not to love this movie!
The acting here is actually pretty damn good considering the material. Everyone manages to play things completely straight faced no matter how amazingly off the wall the scenes get. One hysterical detail to notice is Jack’s obviously modern (for the early 60’s) hair cut and the fact that sideburns seem to be the identifying mark of whether a character is evil or good. My favorite character here is Pendragon who chews up the scenes like pacman on bath salts. This guy doesn’t just look like Doctor Strange..He IS Doctor Strange..In fact I’m convinced this is secretly a prequel to Marvel’s residential sorcerer..I’m aware that that assessment doesn’t make any logical sense..but I stand behind it nonetheless.
The special effects here are…amazingly silly. claymation and the use of platforms poorly hidden behind super imposition make for some truly hilarious scenes. Add to it the actors being substituted with obvious clay stunt doubles during certain scenes and the constant change in the monsters size and you’ve got some great cheese for sure.
The cinematography here was very well done, showcasing a beautiful 35mm that utilizes naturally lighting in all of the exterior shots and smoothly transitions to the man made set shots with ease. There’s some moments like the witch attack scene where the lighting and approach drastically change..but I’m pretty sure that was intentional..although baffling.
Overall I absolutely loved this movie. My son Caleb and I had a hell of a time laughing and riffing through it and I think that this is one that works both as something to watch with the kiddies and also something to watch with bros over some brewskies for a night of drunken laughter.
I give it two middle fingers chopped off and sanded to the bone. Director Nathan Juran (famous for Attack Of Th 50 ft woman, and The Voyage Of Sinbad) created one of the most memorable children’s epic of all time and it’s really too bad that so many people overlook or never hear about this gem..just avoid the remake and stick with this one trust me.