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17.1.15

Ooga Booga (2013)


Director: Charles Band
Starring: Wade F. Wilson, Ciarra Carter, Karen Black, Stacy Keach, Gregory Niebel, Siri, Amber Strauser, Maddox
Not rated, 95 minutes

Charles Band is back with yet another killer doll movie, this time with a story that attempts to exploit the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, MO. The star is a sixteen inch African bushman doll named Ooga Booga, who previously appeared in DOLL GRAVEYARD and EVIL BONG.

OOGA BOOGA opens with a look at a children's show hosted by a degenerate alcoholic with a rubber pig nose named Hambo. When Hambo's drunken shenanigans get him fired mid-taping, he decides to get into the toy biz with a line of politically incorrect action figures. One of which is our star Olga Booga, whom Hambo gifts to his friend, Devin, a young, black medical student with a bright future. Tragedy strikes when Devin interrupts a convenience store robbery in progress by a trio of bumbling racist scumbags (led by internet blogger Maddox). The clerk is shot, and while Devin is attempting to help the dying man, a racist cop arrives and murders Devin in cold blood. As Devin's life slips away, an electrical mishap involving a slushy machine miraculously transfers Devin's soul into the Ooga Booga doll. Devin, now possessing the doll, sets out to get revenge against all the racists involved in his death.

On one hand, I have to give it to Band for having the guts to exploit a very controversial topic in a film that many will consider racist. On the other, I have to wonder just what he thought he was accomplishing here. OOGA BOOGA is a very dumb movie full of racist caricatures and pathetic attempts at humor that probably won't amuse anyone with an IQ in the triple digits. Band unsuccessfully attempts to merge blaxploitation with his killer doll shtick and ended up with a tasteless and moronic "comedy" designed to appeal to the lowest common denominator. I'm sure there is an audience that will be receptive to this film, though I certainly wouldn't want to be around them.

The most troublesome thing here is not the racial element, but the way Band handles a rape scene in the second act. Devin's girlfriend (played by Ciarra Carter) is cornered by the trio of criminals (same ones who robbed the store) and is gang raped in an alleyway. She returns home, dazed and disheveled, and immediately goes to the bathroom. Band then incorporates a very unfortunately timed shower scene in which Ooga Booga leers at the nude rape victim and masturbates. I'm not one who is easily offended, but I was amazed by the level of bad taste Band displays here.

In one of her final performances, Karen Black (HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES, THE PYX) essentially gets to reprise her role from TRILOGY OF TERROR, as an eccentric old lady who gets on Ooga Booga's bad side. Stacy Keach also appears as a racist and corrupt judge, in a role that could possibly be a career low. Did he read the script beforehand? Also appearing is porn actress Siri, as a white trash hooker appropriately billed as "Skank." The highlight of the film (for me, anyway) is a brief part for the impossibly sexy Amber Strauser, as Hambo's smoking hot sidekick, Peggy Suey.

I recommend watching only the first five minutes to see Amber Strauser. Then you can turn it off and do something better with your time. If you want to see an African-American themed killer doll movie, watch RAGDOLL (also from Band's Full Moon) instead. It's a fun little movie, unlike this ugly and pointless mess.

1.5 out of 5.

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