• Mike Holtz

FRIGHTFEST Review: 'Benny Loves You' is a F*cking Riot

A man dealing with the inability to grow up and be an adult throws away his teddy bear, Benny. Which then comes back to life as an adorable killing machine.

Directed by: Karl Holt (The Pandemic Anthology)

Starring: Karl Holt, Claire Cartwright

There's 'Child's Play', 'Annabelle', 'Monkey Shines', 'Puppet Master', whatever. Benny though, is officially the cutest serial killer on film. What's even better is that he's one of the grossest (moments in the 'Puppet Master' are hard to top). This may, dare I say it, be the most entertaining entry into the entirely overdone doll murder market. I typically hate these movies. Just punt the damn thing. Movie over.

Benny however, has captured my stupid ass heart.

Jack (Karl) would be a typical movie slacker who lives with his parents except for the film (as it does with almost everything) takes that two steps further. He's gross as hell and there is no hope for him. When his parents unexpectedly pass though, in the most dumb as shit, hilarious ways he has no hope for survival on his own. He somehow through the grace of hobo Jesus was the creative director for a toy company but he's been demoted there by his mustached boss Ron (James Parsons) who I can only describe as a hilarious dead pan Steve Zahn. His life is in shambles. Then, this adorable as fuck teddy bear rabbit looking Elmo thing hops out and starts to murder people out of love for him. And I mean he murders the shit out of them. There are more than a few absolutely disgusting and hilariously gory death exhibitions left in his wake. Horror fans will get a kick out of it, I have no doubts.

There's not a lot to explain about 'Benny Loves You' other than it is hilarious, disgusting, cute, messy, dumb as hell and really impressive. The ways they float that little bastard so freely through the screen is a work of art. It's not REALLY believable but it's a whole lot more fluent moving and fascinating than you would have ever thought possible. Benny only has three or four sentences he says including 'Play with Benny', 'Benny loves you' and a swath of wild giggles but smack me on the ass and call me Suzan if they don't use those lines to pure perfection. I mean, that little fucker had me deep belly laughing more than a handful of times and the rest of the time I was guffawing over just how gross and wacky the film got with the kill scenes.

Throughout it all, hopeless Jack (and I mean way more hopeless than a typical guy in this situation is) starts to get his life together slowly but surely. Meanwhile, his bear is visciously murdering anyone who gets to close to him whether to hurt him or love him. The luck he manages to squabble together to get away with all this includes him running into a gorgeous woman (Cartwright) who just happens to dig his weird ass style. Cartwright is a glowing and refreshingly original character battling alongside Jack as they try to survive his killer teddy.

'Benny Loves You' is a goddamn riot and absolutely shockingly better than it has any right to be. I won't quite put it on 'Shaun of the Dead' levels but I may not put any other horror comedy ever on that level. All I know is I haven't been this flat out entertained watching a horror movie in a while. Maybe that says more about me than 'Benny Loves You' but I can't wait to show this wacky shit to someone someday soon. There will be amongst them people who hate me for it but I have a feeling that a lot more of the people hanging around me are going to find it just as much of a riot as I do. Find it! 8/10

You can find tickets for 'Benny Loves You' at FRIGHTFEST here.

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