My best friend was in Arkansas for a month, and as Christi was getting ready to leave, we decided to get some Indian food and watch horror movies. We knew we wanted to watch at least one classic horror film, and at least one really cheesy B-movie. We got a lot of options, and I was particularly thrilled to find a movie about an evil gingerbread man, running wild through a bakery. I talked that one up–it’s called GingerDEAD Man, by the way–but sadly it didn’t come in from Netflix in time. So, we substituted Plan 9 From Outer Space. We have a perverse love for really terrible movies, so the fact that it won awards for Worst Movie and Worst Director, as well as the fact that after Bela Lugosi died, he was doubled by someone’s chiropracter seemed really promising.
We watched Halloween for our classic horror, but we didn’t actually find it scary. First of all, we couldn’t figure out the geography of what was happening. Maybe we weren’t paying attention, but we couldn’t keep track of who was next door, who was down the street, and who was three blocks away. Second, a girl spent half her screen time running around in nothing but a man’s shirt and tube socks. I was just not raised to go outside without any pants on. And finally, why, oh, why Jamie Lee Curtis did you keep leaving the knife behind? Leaving it, in fact, right next to the body of guy who was trying to kill you? Really? I never knew I was such a stickler for continuity and logic, but I found all of those things really distracting.
We rounded out the night with a zombie comedy called Dance of the Dead, which was Christi’s choice, and a pretty inspired pick. I described the movie, which is about a bunch of zombies who rise from the dead and attack a town on prom night, as a bad movie that knows it’s bad. That’s not really accurate, though. It’s a horror movie that doesn’t take itself seriously. Zombies explode out of their graves, and if that image isn’t funny enough, the behind the scenes footage showing how that effect was achieved is pretty hilarious, too. Think Shaun of the Dead set in high school.
It was a nice way to spend her last night in Arkansas, but what about The GingerDead Man? Watching a movie starring Gary Busey as an evil cookie (That’s right, Gary Busey!) is not the sort of thing that’s fun to do alone, so my friend, Shea, agreed to watch with me. He also had the clever/disturbing idea to eat gingerbread man cookies while we watched. Wait, did I say disturbing? I meant delicious.
Here’s the blurb about the film from Netflix:
Evil never tasted so good! When Sarah Leigh (Robin Sydney) testifies against three murderers in a death penalty case, she never expects them to return to life in the form of delicious desserts. But that’s exactly what happens when their cremated ashes accidentally fall into a batch of batter and are baked into a trio of gingerbread men. Now, the adorable yet evil cookies will stop at nothing to find the woman who sent them to the electric chair.
I hate to be picky, but that isn’t exactly what happens because there aren’t three killers baked in to a trio of cookies. Rather, there is one killer who is turned into a single nefarious cookie. They are kind of right about the “adorable” part, though.
You may be wondering how ashes accidentally fall into a batch of batter? Well, having seen it I can tell you that it happens because the ashes are delivered in a box labeled “Grandma’s GingerBread Seasoning.” And when has Grandma ever steered you wrong when it came to baked goods? If you are now asking yourself why they would be sent that way OR why a competent baker could mistake a tin full of ashes for actual spices, the makers of Gingerdead Man would ask that you kindly stop thinking so much, as that just ruins the movie.
And since I can’t stop splitting hairs, the ashes don’t accidentally fall into the dough; they’re added on purpose as seasoning. But, to be fair things don’t really start getting crazy until one of the bakery’s employees bleeds copiously into the batter. Now, I waited tables for three years, and I cannot imagine serving food that I knew had even a tiny drop of blood in it, let alone enough blood to turn the dough pink, which is what happens here. What I’m saying is that homicidal cookies aside, that bakery still has some serious problems.
Was it scary? No. Are the phrases “eat me” and “smart cookie” invoked? Absolutely. Was it as awesomely bad as Shea and I had hoped? Yes, yes it was. Is there a sequel with some cooking related subtitle? Yep, two of them. There’s Gingerdead Man 2: Passion of the Crust, and coming next year, there’s Gingerdead Man 3: Saturday Night Cleaver. Just a little something to think about for next Halloween.