Reviewed by The Fouywonder
Starring Kelli Jensen, Jessica Hall, John Anton, Nathaniel Ketcham, Heather Doba, Brian Zoner, Dr. Rudolph C. Hatfield
Directed by Tommy Brunswick
And I asked the Lord, “Why? Why hath thou forsaken me?” The Lord responded, “I gave you free will. I did not make this movie nor did I make you watch it. The choice was yours, and the consequences are yours as well.” And then the fiery flames of hell began to crackle at my feet. My fate was sealed as I slowly descended into the lake of fire. The devil, as it turns out, is actually a demonic clown. Why am I not surprised?
It was about two years ago when I first endured a truly worthless piece of slasher movie garbage entitled S.I.C.K., an acronym for the nonsensical Serial Insane Clown Killer. My psyche remains scarred to this day by the magnitude of that film’s wretchedness. A few months back I first heard that Lionsgate was planning to release a sequel, 2 S.I.C.K. Naturally, I was mortified. I’ve never come across a single soul that has a positive thing to say about S.I.C.K. so how on earth could anyone at Lionsgate think of releasing a sequel even if it is a name-only sequel? Somewhere along the way someone at Lionsgate came to this same conclusion, and thus 2 S.I.C.K.‘s title reverted back to Mr. Jingles, the original name of the film they purchased and planned to unload to DVD as a sequel to one of the worst direct-to-DVD horror films of all time. Now that I’ve seen Mr. Jingles, I realize that they should have released it as a sequel to S.I.C.K. as it carries on the legacy of worthless slasher crappola based around a psychotic clown.
Now to be fair, Mr. Jingles is a better film than S.I.C.K., but we’re really just talking about a matter of degrees here. Whereas I found S.I.C.K. to be boring, pointless, and pure agony from beginning to end, Mr. Jingles induced more of the same but at least had two things in its favor: a decent-looking killer clown costume and the director seemed to at least know how to operate a camera. Alas, those two positives are still negated by the fact that the psycho clown this time out is still neither scary nor funny and the filmmaking is still quite bad overall. What we have here is yet another example of a film that looks like it was made by a bunch of friends who probably had a ball making it but none of that entertainment value translates to the screen.
Mr. Jingles was a serial killer that dressed as a circus clown. The film opens with a prologue in which Mr. Jingles went on a killing spree in the home of young Angie. Her parents slaughtered and she nearly murdered too, a heroic young policeman saves the day by gunning down the killer clown from our space. If you want to know how cheaply made this film is, then look no further than when the cop opens fire on Mr. Jingles at point blank range. There’s no flash from the muzzle, only the foley’d-in sound effects of a cap gun. Mr. Jingles then falls dead without any squibs or physical sign that he’d been hit. Oh, and did I mention that the actress playing 12-year-old Angie in this prologue is the same obviously twenty-something actress that will play the now 19-year old Angie when the film picks up five years later?
It’s now five years later. Angie’s spent the past few years in the psychiatric ward. She’s being released, and today just happens to be her 19th birthday. Say, birthday parties provide an excuse to get a bunch of potential victims together in one place just in case a homicidal clown just happened to come back from the dead for revenge. If not, then the demonic clown will come back from the dead and have only Angie to deal with, and that would require a script that’s more subtle, more suspenseful, and with a more psychological battle of wills between the young woman and her unholy tormentor, but that’s damn sure not going to happen since this is a no budget, no talent slasher flick where chopping some guy’s penis off and throwing the obvious dildo prop at another victim is what masquerades as entertainment.
Being that he’s now of supernatural origin, Mr. Jingles goes from looking like a John Wayne Gacy wannabe in a clown costume to a Shaggy DA-haired version of Pennywise from Stephen King’s It. He also possesses the Jason Takes Manhattan-like ability to teleport to wherever it’s most convenient for him to be to kill someone off. He’s behind you, he’s in front of you, he’s nowhere to be seen, and suddenly, poof, he’s right there again. See, it helps to be able to get out that one last occult spell just before you die in case you ever hope to come back from the grave as a supernatural, motor-mouthed, dual hatchet-swinging psycho clown from hell.
The name Mr. Jingles has since gone on to become the stuff of legend in this small town much as Freddy Krueger’s became to the people that lived in his hometown. This will give us plenty of opportunity for characters to talk about the legacy of Mr. Jingles, the possibility of him returning from the dead, that poor girl that just got out of the asylum, that cop that’s still haunted by his encounter with the titular madman, and those stoner jerks that want to crash the party dressed as Mr. Jingles as a sick joke. If you cannot figure out how the hell the rest of this trash plays out, then you really need to have a killer clown show up at your doorstep and start whacking you on the head with the non-bladed end of a hatchet while growling horrendous one-liners at you in a voice that sounds like Yoda possessed by Satan.
Movies like Mr. Jingles exist solely for the least discriminating gorehounds out there. According to a couple of astonishingly positive reviews I came across for this atrocious film on IMDB, I can once again confirm my firm belief that gorehounds are amongst the easiest to please movie-watching audiences in the world. I, on the other hand, think Mr. Jingles probably did many of these victims a favor by killing them off because judging by the blackened blood and entrails that pour out of them, these people must have been suffering from some horrendous ebola-esque virus. A quick death was surely a godsend for the suffering these poor diseased people must have had to endure. Although I doubt it was close to the suffering I endured having to watch them die.
So let’s run down the checklist of cinematic crimes: awful acting, lame scripting, bad directing, mediocre gore f/x, inconsistent audio… I’m sure if I think long enough I could come up with a few more things to rant about. And much like S.I.C.K., Mr. Jingles wraps up with what might have been a clever plot twist if the movie preceding it had actually been worth a damn and if they’d been capable of leaving well enough alone. But no, Mr. Jingles boasts the dreaded double twist ending. This second one happens within mere moments of the first one, completely negates it and, god forbid, threatens us all with the prospect of a sequel. Come to think of it, this second twist ending essentially leaves the movie hanging with no real resolution to anything. It doesn’t end; it just stops. Unfortunately for me, it stopped over 80 minutes later than it should have.
Renting Mr. Jingles will probably cost you about $5. Before you even think about renting Mr. Jingles, just stop and think about all the things that $5 could get you. I guarantee you the majority of those things will prove more rewarding than the opportunity to watch this film.
0 out of 5