Evil Bong (2006)
"Dude, it's one scary trip!"
A group of college stoner buddies come into possession of a mysterious bong that is sent to them after they respond to an ad in a paper. However, as they each soon find out, anyone who smokes from it is pulled into the bong itself and killed by the force that lives inside.
But I’m sure you gathered that already. I mean, what else were you honestly expecting from a film called Evil Bong? I think I’ve reached rock bottom with this one and gone completely insane. Did I really watch this? Standards have been slipping for a while but even I’m not sure why I plumped for this one when I’ve got dozens of creature features, slashers and giant monster movies to watch. As someone who has never got the whole ‘stoner’ culture, films like Evil Bong just go right over my head. The stereotypical images of laziness, stupidity, a lack of ambition, and so on, that are associated with stoners don’t exactly set my desires racing – who wants to sit and get high all day when I could be out there in the real world realising my dreams and ambitions (or just sitting as a keyboard warrior writing reviews!)? The same principle applies to these stoner films. Why should I invest my time supporting characters who would rather sit idly around and smoke weed rather than doing something productive with our very time-sensitive lives? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to brand everyone with the same tag because I just don’t get it: everything about smoking weed seems kind of pointless. Trying to build up a film and throwing in some Macguffin which stops the main characters from partaking in this seems just as futile.
Anyway, I’m sure I’ve done enough damage to my demographic and insulted a large portion of my readers with these comments but as I’ve said, I just don’t get it because films like Evil Bong are made as a result. Films with few redeeming qualities which showcase smoking weed as if everyone does it, and those who don’t should because they’re missing out on the in-jokes. I guess Evil Bong was made for a specific audience, hence the inclusion of notable ‘stoner actor’ Tommy Chong, famous for his series of Cheech and Chong comedies which revolved around smoking copies amounts of marijuana. Chong is actually the best bit about the film. I’ve never seen any of the Cheech and Chong films but they are pretty infamous so it was pretty easy to spot the obvious gags and references, though not necessarily getting them, and at least Chong is committed to delivering a scenery-chewing performance.
If you expect anything resembling a cohesive film then think again. It’s almost like a sketch scene with one or two ideas spread thinly over the running time. The film is shot entirely across two sets: the Friends-style front room in the real world and the ‘bong world’ strip club. And that’s it. Characters will smoke weed in the real world, are sucked into the bong and then are either killed or attempt to escape from the bong. That’s the entire film in a nutshell. Rinse and repeat. There are no scares here. No tension. No atmosphere. No freakiness (unless you count a bong with eyes and a mouth). What’s really annoying about Evil Bong is that all of the scenes inside the bong are given a hazy border to give us the impression that they’re in this bong world and are under the influence of the drugs (and no doubt expecting most of its target demographic to be under the influence as well). Even the inclusion of copious nudity from the well-endowed strippers does little to keep interest piqued.
Charles Band has produced hundreds of films in his time under the various guises of his many production companies, most famously the Puppet Master franchise. Over recent years, he’s developed something of a ‘tiny terrors’ fetish in which his horror films must include some sort of maniacal miniature monsters. Evil Bong is populated by a bunch of cameos from Band’s more famous productions including the Gingerdead Man, Jack Attack from Demonic Toys and even a cameo from Tim ‘Dollman’ Thomerson. In this respect, it’s more of an extended commercial to showcase Band’s other franchises and those who don’t know who these characters are will be none the wiser as to their inclusion. The Evil Bong of the title is another of those puppets with limited movement which just sits there, says a few things where its mouth moves slightly and that’s it. Hardly the stuff of nightmares. When you make the Gingerdead Man look like Freddy Kruger, you’ve got problems!
As an English teacher, even I am lost for words for how I can summarise Evil Bong. Describing it as horror is pushing it too far. Calling it a comedy is a disservice to the likes of Laurel and Hardy, Chaplin, and Keaton. Jeez, when I think of the likes of The Shawshank Redemption, The Godfather and Schindler’s List, Evil Bong kind of pales into insignificance. It’s a film which had a limited market, would have an even limited fan base and most likely thirty or so people across the entire world will rate it as their favourite film.
Director(s): Charles Band
Writer(s): Charles Band (story), Domonic Muir (story)
Actor(s): David Weidoff, John Patrick Jordan, Mitch Eakins, Brian Lloyd, Kristyn Green, Robin Sydney, Kristen Caldwell
Duration: 86 mins