Plot: Beth (Dani Kind) just wants to make her son Harley’s birthday a special one, even if no one else seems to be on board. She has gotten the entire family tickets to the Banana Splits, one of Harley’s favorite shows and while no one else is excited to go, they play along for Harley’s sake. The drama is ever present and only gets worse once the family arrives at the studio, as only Harley and Beth are interested in having fun, as everyone else just complains or distracts themselves with their phones. Meanwhile, behind the scenes of the show, the news hits that not only is the successful program being shut down, but this will be the final show. The man behind the robotic Banana Splits performers is displeased and his latest upgrade for his creations seems to have some odd quirks involved. When the curtain falls, a special private tour is given to some lucky audience members, including Harley’s family, but what dark fate awaits those who take this last Banana Splits tour?
Entertainment Value: This one has a fun premise, putting a horror slant on the old The Banana Splits Adventure Hour kids show, though rumors claim it was originally a Five Nights at Freddy’s adaptation. In any event, it is a fresh approach to the source material and while it is rather slow to start, the final act is a lot of fun and redeems the rest of the picture. The narrative has sparks of promise, but it just takes so long to wind up and the characters are pretty dull, so until the Banana Splits turn heel, the movie has little in terms of entertainment. I don’t know if the movie could have maintained the wild pace of the final act for the entire duration, but a quicker path through the tedium would have welcome. Or perhaps more colorful, fun to watch characters could have been present and that might have livened up the early scenes. When an annoying influencer couple is the most interesting part of the character lineup, you know a movie might not have invested much time or effort into the lineup of victims. But the final act is immense fun and showcases some wonderful, creative gore at a brisk pace, so once the movie gets going, it is a wild ride. I can’t give it a strong recommendation, as most of the film is on the dull side, but for horror fans who appreciate blood and guts, the final act makes this one worth a look.
No nakedness. The movie brings the bloodshed however, with a long lead in that eventually unleashes a consistent, creative flow of violence. Once the blood starts, we’re treated to a parade of set pieces that includes a glorious session of forceful limb removal that is an impressive gore centerpiece. That scene is splashy, chunky, and looks fantastic, a masterful slice of blood soaked carnage. Other highlights include a lethal deep throat, the old “saw the influencer in half” trick, a trip to hammer town, severed head, a melted face, and a brutal hit & run. A few other less violent incidents also pop up, so The Banana Splits Movie delivers in this department. The dialogue isn’t that great, but there are some fun lines and exchanges. A little family drama, an asshole stepdad, and a few one liners, but not much else. The craziness is rooted in the wild violence, as the rest of the movie is pretty tame and the lead in to the chaos is kind of dull. A couple of the characters are at least a little wacky, which helps, but beyond the gore, this one doesn’t offer much in terms of over the top or insane moments.
Overall Insanity: 3/10
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