Gingerdead Man, The (2005)

The Gingerdead Man (1995)

Out of the oven… and into your heart!

In a small diner, deranged killer Millard Findlemeyer opens fire on the Leigh family and kills them all except for the daughter, Sara. During the trial, Sara testifies against him and he is sentenced to death via the electric chair. In a vow of revenge, Findlemeyer’s mother mixes her sons ashes with that of a secret gingerbread cookie mix and sends it to Sara’s bakery. When one of her employees cuts his arm and bleeds into the mix, Findlemeyer is resurrected as a murderous gingerbread man, intent on getting revenge against Sara!

 

Yes that is the plot, as silly as it sounds. I can’t even begin to imagine how the writers pitched this idea to the studio but Charles Band has a fetish for small killer things (eg. Puppet Master, Hideous!, Demonic Toys, et al) so anyone with a killer miniature will immediately get their film authorised! It’s a silly reworking of Child’s Play with a serial killer’s soul being transferred into something small and sinister so you would at least expect this to be campy, corny and a little bit fun? Right? Wrong!

This is one lame film. It doesn’t help that it only clocks in at a paltry seventy minutes but then you’ve got the handful of characters (and I mean handful, there’s only about five people in this film) milling around and doing pretty much nothing for the majority of the running time. It’s dull and dialogue heavy and dying for some serious gingerbread man action. After all, isn’t that the only appeal that this film has? Don’t tell me you’re here to watch one of those brilliant actors doing their thing? Or maybe marvel at John Carl Beuchler’s special effects for the gingerbread man himself?

No you’re here in the hope of catching a glimpse at the rarest of rare serial killers – a twelve-foot tall gingerbread man – slicing and dicing people. Well you best take your binoculars elsewhere because you’re not going to see much of him. The ‘special effects’ for the gingerbread man aren’t too bad. I mean it’s not like he’s on screen a lot for you to get a good look at him but when he is, he looks like a gingerbread man gone wrong. He does things that all gingerbread men do like drive cars so prepare to be amazed! Unfortunately his only real shining moment is when he comes to life for the first time and the novelty value soon wears thin. With such a unique and cheesy premise, it’s a total travesty that it ends up the way it does.

Gary Busey stars and although he’s apparently a bit of a nutter in real life and has a history of playing slightly psychopathic characters in his films, it’s a pity he hasn’t held down a decent A-list career. The man has the psycho role down to a tee (all of that real-life experience!) so it’s a crime that his human form is only in this for about two minutes of screen time right at the start. His voice does the rest of the acting and despite the Gingerdead Man having some decent one-liners, you’d be mistaken for thinking Busey wishes he was somewhere else. I don’t care for any of the other actors present. The script just has them running around this bakery (which only seems to have two or three big rooms) for most of the time but the mute button would have done me a lot more favours.

 

The Gingerdead Man could have become one of those low budget horror franchises like Puppet Master which had a great cult following. With a strong DVD cover, laughably-promising plot and general goofiness it could and should have been better. However it’s poor application of a truly unique premise is just appalling. It’s fifty-five minutes of pure tedium, shoddy writing and a total lack of imagination from all involved. Please spare us the inevitable Gingerdead Man Vs Puppet Master!

 

 ★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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