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  • As an infant, Jonathan Graves is absconded from his father, Malcolm (Michael Des Barres), the leader of a black magic cult, when Malcolm almost sacrifices Jonathan in a ritual. 25 years later, Jonathan (Peter Liapis) learns that his father has passed away and he has inherited his estate, including a large home that is now in disrepair. He moves there with Rebecca (Lisa Pelikan), and soon after begins acting strangely, instinctively following his father's footsteps.

    If you're a fan of campy, cheesy horror films, as I am, Ghoulies is a must see. Everyone else should probably avoid this film. This is a Charles Band production. Charles Band means Empire/Full Moon, and Empire/Full Moon is almost a guarantee of some campiness/cheesiness. Not many of Band's films, however, approach the sublime ridiculousness of Ghoulies. We're almost in Troma territory here, but Ghoulies is played much more seriously than the typical Troma production, and in this case, it works to increase the entertainment value.

    Since Ghoulies was made in 1984, it features most of the mid-80s horror film clichés. Shortly after moving in, Graves throws a party, so we get big hair, tight miniskirts, skinny ties, recreational drug use, and so on. We also get our eventual fodder for our body count, although in this case, it is worth noting that writer/director Luca Bercovici introduces a "twist" near the end that significantly decreases the body count.

    Liapis is the focus of the film, though, and without him, Ghoulies might be more boring than campy. His absurd overacting, often in solo scenes, takes up a majority of screen time. Still, just the brief presence of two demonic minions, Grizzel and Greedigut, would alone make Ghoulies a must see, especially given how everyone continues their attempt to play the film seriously when they appear. And I haven't even mentioned the other ridiculous minions, which are obviously puppets and "dead props" (Band seems to love puppets), and were the beginning of a horror industry attempt to cash in on the success of Gremlins (also seen later in such films as the Critters series and Munchies). We also get zombies, a Star Wars-like battle of wizards, sunglasses as a major plot device, an evil doll, an attack with a 5 foot long tongue, and some probably unintentional homoerotic subtext. Who could pass all of that up? The film gets a 7 out of 10 from me--an 8 out of 10 would have been in order, except for the inexplicable absence of gratuitous nudity.

    Note that while Ghoulies is tagged "comedy/horror", it's very unlikely that it was intended to be a comedy in any way. Even if Band applied the label to the film prior to release, it was probably because even he realized how ludicrous the film turned out. At any rate, it would be misguided to watch it expecting intentional humor.
  • Yes indeed the 1980's when I was but a very impressionable teenager, it felt like my every waking hour was spent in my local videostore, and when I was in school, I was always thinking about what movie I was going to watch next.

    As was the case back then, a cool looking cover was always the catalyst for me to hire the movie regardless of whether or not I enjoyed the movie.

    So Ghoulies was to be my introduction to the cinematic world of a certain film producer Charles Band, and his company Empire Pictures. Having just recently revisited the world of Ghoulies, and just about to embark on my fortieth year on this earth, I have hand on heart began to realise that what I liked when I was a teenager, has not remained the case as I've gotten older.

    No matter what the detractors think of Charles Band's riff on Gremlins, the movie does have more plus points than negatives. The overall acting is pretty spot on, Peter Liapis as Jonathan Graves truly devours his part as Jonathan Graves, heir apparent to the supernatural throne left to him by his late demented father Malcolm, Michael Des Barres.

    Des Barres has never been an actor that I've been to keen on, maybe it's his accent that I find somewhat off putting, but then again if you've ever watched him in Diary Of A Sex Addict, the title pretty much summed that movie up, but let us not forget his turn in Nightflyers.

    You know when your a teenager, and you just watch copious amounts of nonsense, you tens to forget what you've watched and just who was in it, back in 85, I had no idea who Jack Nance was, but then I still hadn't watched Eraserhead, but Nance participation was a bit of a shock to me, I did find myself doing a double take when I spotted him hiding behind that fake beard, but you never forget that crazy eyed stare.

    But what about the movie itself. Like I've mentioned previously, viewing the movie as an adult, you still sensed the atmosphere, those pesky Ghoulies, still look as cheap and cheerful and not quite scary as ever, but Luca Bercovici does capture some pretty good stuff on camera.

    Of particular mention was the scene when Malcolm rises from his grave, quite striking and very well lit.

    Ghoulies was my first introduction to Charles Band, but it wasn't until I watched Trancers, that my interest in Band's output truly took hold of my teenage years, and throughout the next two decades.

    Ghoulies 2 was a smart little follow up three years later, ignore the next two sequels, as really you can't hold a candle to the original.

    My rating is 6/10
  • I thought this movie was entertaining. Especially, if you like beautiful girls in sexy heels and tight dresses. It truly captures 80's fashion and hair styles and I love the 80's. The Ghoulies themselves looked incredibly life-like with grossed-out slobber and nasty sharp teeth. However, I thought the battle between good and evil could have been played out over a longer period of time. This monk comes from nowhere and saves the day in a matter of minutes. The evil guy's son was also drawn to the dark-side too quickly. He moves into his new mansion and begins practicing the dark arts in the same evening during the first party. How uncool. He yells at his guests and quits school the very next day. He should have at least heard voices for a few days first.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    If the cover of your movie has a creature popping out of toilet. I your movie, you better have a creature popping out of a toilet. It's Chekhov's gun. There was no ghoulie that ever popped out of a toilet. I was waiting the entire movie for a puppet to pop out of a toilet, and never got it!

    Aside from that this movie is still pretty bad. The main actor has some weird green eyes that glow when he "invokes" them (I guess). I don't really know, because they don't explain it, and they show up when he is "more" menacing than he normally is. I also didn't understand why they had to wear sunglasses towards the end. He could turn his weird green eyes off when he wanted. He didn't need the sun glasses. I also didn't get why the main character decided he had to quit school to clean up a house. Why wouldn't you just clean up the house after school??? It didn't make any sense.

    The movie is filled with pretty subpar acting. For some reason a female costar that seems like she was already in her fifties, but her actual age hadn't caught up to her yet.

    The ghoulies were the best part, but you only see them for maybe, maybe, 10 minutes out of the whole movie.

    There were also these two dwarfs that showed up for no real reason except to drink some liquid, and fight against their original master (maybe?)
  • manitobaman8130 August 2014
    Laughs and seriousness are both in this movie, I think. It holds the attention but demands complete suspension of logic. A young man and his girlfriend move into an man's old mansion home, where he becomes possessed by a need to control ancient demons. This does remind me a lot of Ghoulies II. The comparisons are obvious, and just like that film, I like it enough, but I don't think it's great or all that really good. I happen to know places and people, some that might pass for the world in Ghoulies. That said, the directing, music, editing, etc. are not focused on at all. If you can find it on DVD or Bluray for under $7, buy it, but it won't be worth much more than that to you because it's a bit outdated.
  • ctomvelu12 September 2009
    A surprise hit in the horror film-drenched 1980s that spawned several sequels, GHOULIES was one ii a long line of puppet movies from the old Empire Pictures, the same folks who would soon bring us RE-ANIMATOR. In GHOULIES, a young man moves into an old mansion and before you know it, he is attempting to conjure up a bunch of hellish critters to do his bidding. Soon enough, he has them going after his enemies. The ghoulies themselves are hand puppets that look pretty ferocious for hand puppets. The conjurer, played by an insufferable actor named Peter Liapus, has been possessed by a dark spirit that resides in the old house. A little too much time is spent on the guy and his conjuring, but once the ghoulies get going, watch out! This comedy horror film stands out among many similar flicks from that era. It was obviously inspired by GREMLINS, but in the end it in no way resembles that now-forgotten classic. Worth a look if you can buy the idea of puppet monsters. PUPPETMASTER had the same theme and look, and was also an Empire Pictures job, if I am not mistaken.
  • This movie made a nice sum of 35 million at the box office, yet many consider it a poor movie at best. So how did it make this much money? With a good ad campaign, that's how. This movie was the first small creature attack movie to come out after the very successful Gremlins the previous year. Critters, which most consider the better film, came out a year later and made a lot less than this one. Then there was the famous scene of the creature coming out of the toilet. It made it look like a Gremlin type movie...funny with a bit of charm to it. It fooled my parents and we saw this dog in the theater when I was ten. We knew it wasn't quite what it was advertised as though as soon as it started as it has a scene where a guy rips out a woman's heart. It isn't all bad though as there are some scenes here and there that are good, but overall this one is just bad as it is not just about little creatures, but a bunch of other satanic stuff as well as this guy throws a party and does rituals and accidentally raises this one evil guy. Sounds better than it is though as there are no stars in this one and none of the actors in this one can act. You do though get to see the little person who played ET.
  • stmichaeldet4 February 2006
    Warning: Spoilers
    Ghoulies kinda threw me for a loop. For years, I had seen the old VHS box moldering away in the backlist at the video store, with the li'l creature popping out of the toilet, and I thought, Gremlins rip-off, figured I'd know the whole plot from scene one, and never bothered. But I finally caught it, and found nothing like I expected. Not that that turned out to be a terribly good thing, but at least it gave me a moment of hope.

    Jonathan Graves inherits the old ancestral mansion, and discovers that he apparently comes from a long line of satanic occultists. Of course, he can't help but pick up the old family tradition. His friends think this is eccentric, and his girlfriend Rebbecca thinks he's a worthless slacker who's wasting time he could be spending fixing up the house. But he gets results, and soon the mansion is populated with a startling number of tiny demon puppets and two helpful midgets that only Jonathan can see.

    Rebecca finally puts her foot down and demands an end to all the Satanism, so what does Jonathan do? He mind-controls her, which not only ends her criticism, but allows him to dress her up in slutty outfits. (This is where any remaining sympathy I had for Jonathan went out the window.) Then he invites all his friends up so that he can use them in an occult ritual which he believes will grant him vast power, but which actually resurrects his dead, Satanist ancestor (dad? gramps? I was never really sure), who shows up spoiling for a fight.

    The puppets go (mildly) berserk, everyone dies, and Jonathan and Gramps have their showdown. Of course, good triumphs (if you can consider a guy who's been summoning demons, bargaining for occult power, and mind-controlling his girlfriend, the good guy). Then, everybody comes back to life in one of the biggest cheats in all slasherdom. Have they no shame?
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This is one of the first of the low-budget direct-to-video from Charles Band's Empire Pictures of the 1980s' VHS craze, and its about as silly and illogical as anything you'll see from that era. Peter Liapis (Kyle Mclachlan's evil twin perhaps?) moves into an old house, and in his attempt to restore it, he becomes obsessed with ceremonial black magic. In his rituals he manages to conjure up personifications of the demons; Vepar, Procell and Astaroth in the form of bogus-looking, puppet-like goblins. This is hopelessly contrived and laughable as the ghastly dwarfs hang around and wreck havoc on a group of unlikable, snobbish idiots after Liapis fulfills his final master ritual. Its typical Charles Band stuff as the cast takes the ridiculousness seriously, and one can only suspect that the idea was loosely ripped off from the incomparable hit, 'Gremlins' Its fun if you like to watch slimy, rubbery toys attack people, and some will get a laugh out of the most absurd and incoherent of plot-lines.
  • Tony-3863 July 2000
    Ok, I have to admit - I rented this film because of the cover of the box. It has a Ghoulie climbing out of a toilet with the caption "Everyone Gets It In The End" right above it. I thought that was sort of funny, maybe even clever and figured "what the heck - maybe it'll be funny".

    Boy was I wrong. I love horror movies. From Child's Play, Wishmaster, Pumpkinhead, Friday the 13th, etc...But this was pure trash. The special effects were horrible and the plot was dull. It earns a rare 1/10.
  • This is another revisit from long ago but, instead of time having added to its luster a' la my recent screening of GORILLA AT LARGE (1954), it has only revealed it as the silly piece of junk it always has been. Sporting several of the same crew members who would later be reteamed for TROLL (1986; see my comments above), it deals with the Satanic goings-on in an abandoned Italian villa perpetrated by the long-lost son of a Cult leader (whose demise occurs at the film’s very start) to the eventual indifference of his goofy, pot-headed group of friends (including Mariska Hargitay, the daughter of Mickey Hargitay and Jayne Mansfield, who had escaped unscathed in the freak car accident which took the life of her actress mum).

    Unfortunately, unlike the preceding Gremlins or the later Trolls, the titular creeps don’t have much of a personality; they are the handiwork of John Carl Buechler who later stepped behind the camera to inflict on an unsuspecting world such works of dubious artistry as TROLL (which, actually, wasn’t half-bad), Friday THE 13TH PART VII: THE NEW BLOOD (1988; which has already receded irretrievably into my subconscious) and even GHOULIES III: GHOULIES GO TO COLLEGE (1991)!!

    Apart from a mercifully brief but equally embarrassing turn from David Lynch mascot Jack Nance at the start and end of the film, the cast is peopled by obnoxious characters – from the hero who turns green-eyed when in the throes of Satanic possession to the clumsy, lock-jawed Morrissey-lookalike hunk of the party. Not that it matters but, for some reason, the end of the film reverses most of the evil that had happened throughout, making this a singularly pointless venture in the annals of screen history (and its being followed by three sequels all the more baffling)!
  • Jonathan Graves (Peter Liapis) inherits his Satanist father's mansion. He throws a party and starts conjuring up Ghoulies, which are sort of demonic goblin things. This is a garbage Gremlins knock-off with no humor, charm, or entertainment value. The best thing about it is that it has one of the coolest movie posters of the 1980's, with the Ghoulie coming up out of the toilet. It's just not a fun movie at all. It's nasty and cheap. Avoid this mess. See Gremlins instead. Or you can just skip this one and watch the better Ghoulies part 2. But yeah, Gremlins is better than that too. So just watch Gremlins or even Critters over this dreck.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Having read a number of positive reviews on this movie, let me be brutally honest and say that this is a pretty poor effort. The plot is nonsensical, the acting, though not all awful, is shoddy, the special effects look very dated nowadays, and the ending is truly ridiculous! I'm not even sure why the movie is called 'Ghoulies' seeing as they do so little throughout the film! Okay, for nostalgia fans of the 1980s there are some awful haircuts, and amusing cloakroom choices, but that is not a reason to watch a film. This spends huge amounts of time building up to the ending, which is a total let down. honestly, how films like this got made I don't know - surely the actors must have been sat on the set thinking, 'Why am I talking to a moving piece of snot' (which is in large part all that the ghoulies look like - about as menacing as my nan without her teeth in - no hold on, she's far scarier!). Reviews might compare this film to Gremlins, but they are in a totally different ball-park - don't watch this movie, watch Gremlins instead... or even 'Critters' for that matter.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    When I saw this I thought it was going to be great sense I saw Ghoulies two first than three and than this. I saw the whole thing and boy did this movie stink so much it made part four better than this.This movie does deserve to go in the bottom because it was pointless,stupid and not much blood in the horror scenes.Although this was a cruddy movie,at least in this Ghoulies it showed horror parts than the others.But besides that good thing the rest of the movie was so boring I couldn't bear to watch more of this movie. Who ever made this movie possible deserves to die because that company doesn't know good movies and bad ones.All I'm saying is do not ever watch this movie or you will be very bored.
  • The rating of even a 1 out of 10 seems to high for this film. Perhaps the 1 would have been more justified at the time when the film was released, watching it for the first time nowadays however just brought a hole in my pocket for renting it and to yours as well if you do too. Its not because of the special effects (the ghoulies themselves were pretty good for the time) but because both the acting and story are so pathetically drawn its hard to find much positives such a blunder. It marketed itself as a funny horror but I didn't find myself laughing once throughout. The ghoulies take their sweet time to show themselves (many viewers wouldn't have had the staying power and would have given up), and the first death comes 3/4 through the film. The final show down was laughable in a sense that it was so lame (lightening). While the comedian for the film (a kiefer sutherland lookalike, the lead was a eric roberts lookalike) were down right annoying. You'd hardly recognised SVU's Mariska Hargitay with big hair the only cast known to me. The one bright spark was the clown which might frighten some viewers, and i think was used from this film for scary movie 2?. I guess I'm just not a fan of 80s b grade horror/comedy dark magic?
  • Let's see what we've got here: a big mansion that was inhabited by some Satan worshipers' sect in the past, a big party with drugs, sex and alcohol; university students that look like they're 40 years old and that are permanently on heat; some horny chicks, the typical cocky, and a few demons that look like the mutant brothers of the Muppets. Yeah!! Welcome to 80's b-series.

    Well, if there's someone out there that takes this kind of product too seriously, man, GET A LIFE. This movies are only good for one thing: gather a bunch of friends together, get some beers, and have a nice time... OK, "Ghoulies" is a complete mess in every possible way, but that's something you can anticipate by having a look at the DVD cover.

    God bless the 80's!!

    *My rate: 2/10
  • You have to be crazy to hate this film!The story line is very uniqe.A lot better than Critters or Gremlins,and is one of those movies where there's a good reason to make a sequel.The movie makes you wanna rush down to the nearest video store and grab 2,but avoid 3 and 4,they were done by lousy people,and has no point,could of been done without!The point is,Ghoulies is a must see!
  • A young couple (Peter Liapis and Lisa Pelikan) inherit a huge old house from his family. It's deserted and falling apart so naturally they move in. It seems his dad was a witch and had a coven that sacrificed people. After they move in he starts practicing black magic and doing rituals--just like dear old dad. It seems dad is eager to come back from the dead and start the coven again...

    As you can see this has nothing to do with gremlins or such--it's a humans vs. witchcraft movie--and a bad one. I started realizing I was in trouble with opening credits "Empire Pictures presents A Charles Band Production". Empire made dreadful no budget horror films and Charles Band produced all of them. That should have been enough for me to grab the remote and change channels--but I kept watching.

    The acting is pretty terrible--Pelikan and Liapis are bad but top honors go to Scott Thomson as their incredibly annoying friend Mike. The direction is lousy--there's not even an establishing shot of the house until 15 minutes in! The script is dull and drags along. As for the "ghoulies"---they look pretty silly and have absolutely no reason to be in the movie. They were probably added in because "Gremlins" was such a hit the year before.

    There's next to no blood, no gore and the attack scenes looks pretty silly (except for one somewhat creepy one involving a killer clown). It all ends up in a silly battle between a good witch and a bad witch with sub-par special effects. Even an appearance by Jack Nance can't save this.

    This was inexplicably a HUGE hit in 1985 (mostly with kids) and led to 2 sequels (which I refuse to see). This can't even be enjoyed on a bad/good level or as camp--it's too boring! Avoid.
  • Warning: Spoilers

    🌕🌕🌑🌑🌑 1.9

    This was a full moon production, and I've heard they've made worse, but I've seen them make better, so I wasn't satisfied with this boring movie. Not all of it was terrible, but much of the middle is. Which is too bad because the conclusion were the Ghoulies finally come out and do some damage has some cool effects and entertaining kills. The acting isn't great, and neither are all of the unnecessary side characters added in the second half of the film. I didn't actually find the PG-13 rating restricting, as there was still some blood and gore. I would only recommend this to hardcore full moon fans.
  • JoeB13118 July 2012
    Warning: Spoilers
    This movie was made by Charles Band, before he retreated into bad direct to video and then straight to DVD movies, he did theatrical releases.

    This film means to capitalize on the popularity of "Gremlins" by showing small, mischievous puppets doing terrible things to people. Only two problems. Not as much money for the animatronics, so they really looked more like cheap puppets, and a plot that made not a lick of sense.

    A baby is saved from a Satanic cult, and grows up to inherit the house of the cult leader. He then proceeds to repeat Dad's ritual magic, summoning small demons to do his bidding.

    Look for a young Mariska Hargitay of "Law and Order:SVU Fame", playing one of the Interchangeable Big-Haired Bimbos the monsters proceed to pick off. I'm sure she's really proud to have that on her resume.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I don't know why people claim to hate this movie, because I love it to death. As a representative of the 80's teenage puppet horror schlock genre, it has no equal. Plus it has -- in addition to the most gratuitous midgets to appear on screen in the entire history of midget cinema, and I'm including "The Terror of Tiny Town" in that generalization -- a fabulous, frothing, scenery-gnawing performance by Michael Des Barres, who fancied himself an actor for quite awhile despite being continually proved wrong.

    The movie opens with a group of robed satanists preparing to sacrifice a baby in the basement of a mansion. As the head satanist raises his knife, a woman darts out of the crowd and shrieks "No! Not our child!" thus revealing the head satanist, Malcolm (Michael Des Barres) as the baby's father. Malcolm gives the woman a poisonous look with his glowing green eyes and summons puppet demons to eat her for her intransigence; in the mêlée, no one notices as Wolfgang (Jack Nance, the artist formerly known as "Eraserhead") gathers up the baby and spirits him away.

    Fast forward 20-something years. The baby has grown up to be Jonathan (Peter Liapis) and has inherited the mansion where he was once almost killed on an altar and where, presumably, his mother was eaten by evil puppets. He must not know the history of the place, though, because he moves right on in with his girlfriend Rebecca (the cat-faced Lisa Pelikan) and begins to clean the place up. They appear to be college students with the usual quota of "wacky" friends without whom no 80's movie would be complete: the slutty girl, the nerd, the stupid hunk, etc.

    During the cleanup, Jonathan discovers a pentagram on the basement floor and opens a trunk full of his father's satanist regalia. This frees his spirit to leap headlong into the wholesale worship of evil, despite the fact that he has never shown a tendency toward black magic before in his life and was, up to this moment, known as a pretty decent chap.

    At a housewarming party, Jonathan shows his friends the basement set-up and, having ascertained that he needs seven people to actually do any useful evil, he chants a spell in front of them. They make fun of him and he takes it badly, but the end result -- unknown to his friends -- is the summoning of a dozen ugly little demons of the sort who ate his mother. Oedipus? Can you hear me calling you, son?

    When Rebecca catches him swanning around the basement in satin robes, she stomps off in disgust. He woos her back, only to scare the crap out of her with some impromptu satanistic S&M action in the bedroom. When she leaves again, he decides the only way to get this party started is to get him some minions. Accordingly, he zaps Rebecca with Satan mind control, invites all his friends to dinner, hypnotizes them so they won't notice the puppet monsters drooling in the soup, and "completes the circle". When next we see his friends, they are wearing long white robes and sitting around the pentagram in the basement. For an amateur, Jonathan is pretty good.

    Suddenly there is a flash! and a bang! and two tiny, ugly creatures appear in front of Jonathan, ready to do his bidding. Thus do we meet Grizzel and Greedigut, surely the worst movie roles ever essayed by midget actors (Peter Risch and the enchantingly-named Tamara De Treaux). They promise everlasting devotion and gambol off to do Jonathan's bidding, while his friends, freed from their spell, wander around the house smoking doobies and screwing in the bushes as the demons pick them off one at a time.

    Unfortunately, Johnathan reckoned without Malcolm. As the ghoulies happily disembowel his friends, each "sacrifice" gives the spirit of the Decadent Marquis a little more strength. Eventually he bursts out of his grave on the mansion grounds and strides into the house -- rotting as he goes -- to do battle with the punk kid he should have dispatched years ago in the basement. Hijinks ensue, Jonathan defeats Malcolm at his own game (much to the detriment of poor Wolfgang), his dead friends come back to life, and everyone flees the mansion at a run. Predictably (because there were sequels) the back seat of Jonathan's car is revealed to be full of puppet ghoulies.

    A couple of things. First, who was Peter Liapis and why didn't I know about him before? He's really hot. I mean, really, really hot. Second, Lisa Pelikan has a place in my heart because she appeared in the schlockiest ever Movie of the Week, "I Want To Keep My Baby!" with Mariel Hemingway. Third, Michael Des Barres was NOT an actor, and should never have let his wife write "I'm With The Band" because the whole time I was watching Ghoulies I was thinking, you slept with a Plaster Caster? The Hell?

    On second thought, maybe this movie wasn't so great after all.
  • Rautus11 March 2007
    Warning: Spoilers
    Ghoulies may be similar to Gremlins with the little creatures but that doesn't make it a bad film. The acting is good especially from Peter Liapis, his performance was great.

    The film is about two teenagers that get this new mansion since Johnathan Graves has inherited it, the caretaker Wolfgang knows all about Johnathan's history since he rescued him from his Father when he was going to sacrifice him.

    Soon Johnathan finds a book about magic and finds himself obsessed in finding the power and the knowledge, in the basement he finds his Father's robe and spear and at night he summons the Ghoulies, little creatures that will serve the master who woke them.

    But his girlfriend discovers this and leaves him for now, meanwhile Johnathan summons two Midgets that will also serve him and give him what he wants and that is the power, wisdom and his girlfriend.

    She returns to him only to find that he's eyes have gone green, so has she goes to leave the two Midgets use their magic to control her and make her obey Johnathan.

    That night they throw a dinner party with their friends from high school and Johnathan controls them for his ritual, once completed Johnathan's Father Malcolm rises from his grave and seeks Johnathan to sacrifice him.

    Johnathan's friends snap out of it to find themselves in the dinning room again not unaware of what happened, John and his Girlfriend go to bed while the friends roam the house and are free to do what they want.

    Soon it's not long before Malcolm finds the Ghoulies and they obey their true master. They kill Johnathan's friends and his Girlfriend, and it's not long before Johnathan confronts his Father, Wolfgang shows up and fights Malcolm as Johnathan's Girlfriend and friends come to life again.

    So they escape as Wolfgang defeats Malcolm and the Ghoulies, they drive off leaving the mansion but the Ghoulies are hiding in Johnathan's car.

    Ghoulies may be a little cheesy but it's still fun to watch. 10/10
  • SnoopyStyle19 October 2016
    Jonathan Graves inherits his late father's mansion. His father led a cult for Lucifer and tried to kill him as a baby. He was rescued by the caretaker Wolfgang before his father completed the ritual. His girlfriend Rebecca discovers a demonic book in the library. Jonathan discovers the ritual site in the dungeon and his father's notes. Rebecca throws a party with their friends. After the party, Jonathan uses the notes to call up demons and gain demonic powers.

    The acting is mostly amateurish. This is notable for a young Mariska Hargitay in a supporting role as one of the friends. Michael Des Barres and Jack Nance are a couple of veteran actors. Nobody is doing great work here. The special effects are somewhat cheesy and not shot that well. The creepy sharp-teethed demons are slimy puppets that are almost funny in their cheesy appearances. Everything screams weak 80s B-horror. All the comedy comes from its cheese.
  • No doubt Ghoulies was rushed into production in order to cash in on the success of Joe Dante's Gremlins, but there is a yawning chasm in quality between the two films: Gremlins is ingenious, anarchic, demented, loaded with terrific black humour, features excellent creature effects and stars the yummy Phoebe Cates; Ghoulies is moronic trash with dumb characters and bargain basement monsters.

    The film's uninspired plot sees a young couple, Jonathan and Rebecca (Peter Liapis, who is way too old for the part, and Lisa Pelikan), move into a creaky old mansion where they discover a collection of books on black magic. After reading one particular book, Jonathan becomes obsessed with conducting Satanic rituals, unaware that he is being controlled by the spirit of his dead father, who seeks to return from the grave.

    The 'ghoulies' of the title are diminutive demons that appear to kill the couple's friends (most of whom are so obnoxious that their deaths are more than welcome). Shonky rubber hand puppets created by John Carl Buechler, these critters have none of the mischievous charm of a gremlin (or even a Critter, for that matter) and are neither funny or scary—just embarrassingly bad. Also serving to irritate: two devilish dwarfs, Grizzell and Greedigut (Peter Risch and Tamara De Treaux), and a silly happy ending that sees all of the dead characters miraculously return to life unscathed.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This takes me back to that 1980's era of "humorous monsters," which I guess started with "An American Werewolf in London." The "ghoulies" themselves are far more interesting than the human characters; too bad they weren't given more to do. The chief problem is that the "hero," played by Peter Liapis, is such an absolute stiff that it's hard to work up any interest in what happens to him. His girlfriend is a bit more appealing (and looks pretty hot wearing shades) but their friends are mostly the usual gang of 1980's dorks. I also didn't care much for the two dwarfs, was hoping they'd turn out to be incestuous brother and sister like in "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." The plot is pretty much bargain basement haunted-house stuff, with everybody dutifully going off alone so they can be killed. I only recognized three names: the English musician Michael Des Barres as the cult leader; Jayne Mansfield's kid Mariska Hargitay (from "Special Victims Unit") in her film debut--damn, she was pretty hot herself back in the day; and the late great Jack Nance from "Eraserhead" and other David Lynch flicks. Nance could do more with less than any other actor I can think of, letting those puppy-dog eyes speak volumes. In "Ghoulies" he's criminally underused, but it's nice to see him in almost anything. So as usual, if you can see it for free and have plenty of beer available, sure. go for it. By the way it's hard to believe they were bold enough to rip off the exploding-out-of-the-chest bit from the original "Alien," but what's that line about "imitation being the sincerest form of flattery" –or the laziest…
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