Psycho Goreman [Review]

Psycho Goreman is a film that is very hard to talk or write about, because frankly, there are people who want to watch it and people who avoid it. Truth to be told, I had to watch the trailer two or three times before realizing that I need to see the film.

I haven’t knowingly watched any of director Steven Kostanski’s work but I’m familiar with Astron-6 after loving The Editor a few years prior at the TIFF premiere. On top of that, I remember stumbling on the Psycho Goreman Twitter account around when it was created in late 2018. So for the past few years, I’ve been waiting for the film but never truly aware of what it was really about. And then the film premiered at Beyond Fest and the responses from the film couldn’t be more positive. Both hilarious and full of heart, but I looked at the creature design of PG and thought “but how?” And then I saw the film, and understood it clearly.

Psycho Goreman opens with two children Mimi (Nita-Josee Hanna) and Luke (Owen Myre) playing a game they’ve invented, backing them, is a very intense score that amps them up. Then the camera pulls away and cuts the score, giving us an insight to the children’s POV. The two kids find a stone, that Mimi somehow luckily cracks a code and we are introduced to the alien that soon will be named Psycho Goreman (or PG for short).

PG wanders into an old shoe factory and wrecks the men in there who had just killed someone else. The way he rips into them is definitely reminiscent of Hellraiser. Even the way he carries himself. And here’s how I’m going to start selling the film, imagine if Elliot, his brother and their friends walked in and had control over the Cenobites. That’s what Psycho Goreman is like. The film has so much heart in it’s own way, but at the same time, it pulls away and leans into the pure absurdity of it. It’s violent – both in a cartoonish way, and not. The implications of what these children are witnessing and walking away unphased definitely saying something about violence in our culture.

On top of that, the lore that was built into this film is truly fascinating, and stuff that I wasn’t expecting.That’s one reason to definitely watch the film. The creature design work from Steven Kostanski is impeccable. Worth the price of admission alone. In scenes in which creatures face off against each other, it felt like I stumbled into an old school episode of Power Rangers, but as if it was geared to adults. And I was high. It felt like a combination of all three. The comedy in the film works – between PG’s intensity and vocabulary of how he would kill everyone, to Mimi’s “frig off” attitude is a perfect blend.

Psycho Goreman is a film that deserves an audience, a midnight audience ready to laugh and cheer.