Story: A group of friends spends an evening deep in discussion, debating the merits of religion and in specific, Christianity. Elizabeth (Chelsea O’Toole) has a strong opinion, as she believes religion is the answer for the world’s problems and take offense to Elyse (Kellyn Lindsay), who is an atheist who asks all the questions religious people hide from. The talk is spirited, no pun intended, but in the meantime, a killer stalks the area. As it turns out, a sadistic murderer is on the loose and not just a run of the mill psycho. This killer has a pumpkin for a head and uses the tendrils of the plant to strangle his victims, at least that’s what local legends claim. Can the friends evade death at the hands of a pumpkin, or will they learn about the afterlife sooner than expected?
Entertainment Value: While Pumpkin Man was released in 2019, it is a re-edit of Bill Zebub’s Night of the Pumpkin from 2010. Zebub sometimes revisits his movies and remixes them with new scenes and alternate takes, so Pumpkin Man offers a fresh take on the concept and blends existing and new scenes, for a new coat of paint. In this case, Zebub has expressed his disappointments regarding Night of the Pumpkin, so this new remix makes sense. The end result is, well…a Bill Zebub movie and I have to think that’s what fans expected. Of course, if you’re unfamiliar with Zebub or dislike his work, Pumpkin Man isn’t going to win you over, more than likely, but the movie is in line with his usual releases, so his fans can soak in all the wackiness. Zebub is heavy with dialogue as always, including a wealth of religious elements, but then also stacks the film with naked bodies and even some blood, not to mention some bad jokes and low rent, but fun to watch production values. I wouldn’t put this with Zebub’s most entertaining movies, but it is interesting and creative, so fans of his projects should find enough to like here to give this a spin.
As you’d expect from one of Bill Zebub’s cinematic treasures, Pumpkin Man does indeed have naked flesh on showcase, quite a bit, as it turns out. All of the women wind up nude on screen, often several times and the movie is not shy about that. In other words, there are numerous topless scenes, bare asses, and vivid full front nudity, at a steady clip, no less. The sex scenes are not graphic at all, though there is an awkward, hairy man involved in one of them. I found it to be hilarious though, as the guy looks like Mr. Clean and makes some outlandish sex faces. There is some blood, but not a lot and the violence is not graphic, more over the top. This includes a decapitated head, someone is shot while naked, throat trauma, a very, very, very drawn out sequence where a victim tries to crawl away while slowly bleeding out, and of course, plant based strangulation. The dialogue is not as random or insane or surreal as most of Zebub’s films, but there is some religious discussion and some bad jokes to bask in, while Zebub himself has a small role here. He is often the source of the wildest or most memorable lines in these movies, so his presence is missed. As for wackiness, we have fun at the beach, unenthusiastic cowgirl, a religious bunny, Bill Zebub in a viking hat, a brown eye closeup, running low on shampoo, and a pumpkin crucifixion.
Overall Insanity: 5/10