Saturday, 31 October 2015

Boogedy, Boogedy, Boo!

A few months ago, I was trying to think of the name of an old movie about a family that movies into a haunted house and I just couldn't recall the name of it. I did what anyone else would do - I googled it and I quickly found the name - Mr. Boogedy, a 45-minute family-friendly horror comedy that aired on the The Disney Sunday Movie in 1986 (when I was a five-year-old). A longer sequel, Bride of Boogedy, aired a year later.

I have fond memories of watching both films during my childhood, which my parents had recorded on a VHS. Sadly, the VHS recordings are long gone. Now that I knew the name of the movies, I searched for the DVD or Blu-ray releases. Well, the good news is that it was just released on DVD this year, but the bad news is that it's only available for members of the Disney Movie Club. I ended up joining the club, but not just to buy this movie, as the introduction DVDs are going to be given away as presents for Christmas.

The DVD is a single-disc with both films on it. Mr. Boogedy was directed by Oz Scott (he also directed the sequel). The film centers on Carlton Davis (played by Richard Masur), his wife Eloise (played by Mimi Kennedy) and their children, Jennifer (played by Kristy Swanson), Corwin (played by David Faustino), and Aurie (played by Benjamin Gregory), moving into an old house in Lucifer Falls, New England. The realtor, Neil Witherspoon (played by John Astin), informs the family that the house is haunted by Mr. Boogedy (played by Howard Witt). Of course Carlton and Eloise doesn't believe in ghosts, but their opinions change after their kids have several strange supernatural experiences. They family must band together to get rid of Mr. Boogedy.

Bride of Boogedy once again centers on the Davis family, but with a few casting changes. Tammy Lauren takes over the role of Jennifer, Joshua Rudoy takes over the role of Aurie and Leonard Frey takes over the role of Witherspoon (though his first name is changed to Walter). It seems that Mr. Boogedy didn't die in the previous movie. He is now trapped inside a statue in the town's cemetery and he needs help in being released from his hell. With his cloak, he possesses Carlton's body briefly before taking control of Tom Lynch (played by Eugene Levy). Once again the family must find a way to stop Mr. Boogedy's madness.

It's hard to find a decent family friendly horror comedy that is actually any good. In recent years, the films on the Disney Channel have been horrible as if they had forgotten that you can make a decent movie on a television budget. While Mr. Boogedy and Bride of Boogedy are a bit campy, the films still hold up pretty good considering the practical effects that were used back then. The films are just as good as I remember, but I don't recall Kristy Swanson being in the first film. I guess she became too big of a star to return for the sequel. Overall, both the movies are a delight to watch.

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