“PG: Psycho Goreman” (available on VOD beginning Friday, Jan. 22) is an absolute blast! The movie, which most assuredly isn’t for all tastes (but is arguably for all ages), plays like a mixture of “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” and Peter Jackson’s early output.
Mimi (Nita-Josee Hanna) and her older brother Luke (Owen Myre) spend their days playing Crazy Ball, a game of their own creation. Despite being younger and a girl, Mimi mercilessly bullies Luke. After he loses their latest game of Crazy Ball, Mimi forces Luke to dig a deep hole in their backyard where he’ll purportedly have to sleep as punishment. It’s in this hole that the tyke twosome discover the Gem of Praxidike, which unleashes our titular antihero.
Their discovery is a nameless creature from the planet Gigax (a nod to late Dungeons & Dragons creator Gary Gygax) so the kiddos dub him Psycho Goreman (played by Matthew Ninabar and voiced by Steven Vlahos) – PG for short. If PG had his druthers he’d skin these scamps alive, but so long as Mimi retains the stone he must do as she says. Unfortunately, Mimi’s a bit of a brat and her biddings have consequences.
PG is simultaneously being hunted by Pandora (played by Kristen MacCulloch and voiced by Anna Tierney) for crimes he’s perpetrated across the galaxy. Also embroiled in the chaos are Mimi and Luke’s friend Alastair (Scout Flint) and their folks – the exasperated Susan (Alexis Kara Hancey) and the profoundly lazy Greg (Adam Brooks, sorta reading like Randy Marsh of “South Park”).
“PG: Psycho Goreman” is written, edited, produced and directed by Steven Kostanski (“The Void,” “Leprechaun Returns”), a member of the Canadian film collective Astron-6 (“Manborg,” “Father’s Day” (the 2011 one – not the Robin Williams/Billy Crystal joint), “The Editor”) of which Brooks is also a member. If you’re familiar with these dudes’ work, you know they’re utterly demented.
Kostanski really nails the tonal tightrope this time out however. Aside from a few swears early in the picture and an onslaught of violence throughout (PG decapitates numerous folks, vaporizes a child and removes a foe’s spine in order to forge a sword out of it), “PG: Psycho Goreman” could actually be PG. This is a children’s movie at its core. There’s very little sexual content aside from PG liking to look at pics of hunky guys in magazine ads. These kids don’t cuss. They instead say stuff like hecking and frig and actually break into a “Kids Incorporated”-esque musical number at one point. There are also sweet messages concerning forgiveness and the importance of family. I’m not a parent, but I’d have no issue showing “PG: Psycho Goreman” to children who aren’t gore adverse. If I were 11 this would probably be one of my favorite movies and more so it made this 39-year-old man feel 11 again watching it … and that ain’t a bad thing. He’s not as inspiring as Amanda Gorman, but there’s more than enough room in my heart for Psycho Goreman.