Unlucky Charms

3072668_bigI stumbled across this film while I was researching Nikki Leigh for the Blood of a 1000 Virgins review. Then I had the good fortune of stumbling across it a short time later. Seeing this bit of serendipity as fate, I took the opportunity and I’m very glad that I did.  This film is what I look for when it comes to B-Movies. You can tell that some of the actors are having a good time while others, who will be named later, feel like they’re there for a quick paycheck.

The film opens with Farr Darrig (Nathan Phillips) the Red Man a leprechaun, Pookah (Ben Woolf), Banshee (Katrina Kemp), and Bloody Bones (Peter Badalamenti) a cyclopes have all been residing in the underworld for centuries. They are now called back to earth via ancient magics once again. They are called to the set of a reality TV show, that’s in the vein of a modeling show, but with a lingerie theme.  Five girls are competing against one another for a contract. The girls being Audrey (Tiffany Thorton), Sheila (Nikki Leigh), Erin (Anna Sophia Berglund), Mika (Masumi Max), and Darla (Alex Rose Wiesel). The show is hosted by three judges, DeeDee Deville (Jeryl Prescott) heading up the three, Baxter Randolph (Charlie O’Connell) the sleazy producer and Pirl (Seth Peterson) their generic lackey. Not knowing who summoned them the “monsters” are at first just mildly mischievous, but are soon commanded to kill the contests for their souls to keep their master DeeDee young. But since DeeDee is using the ancient magics for selfish reason the magic is extremely shortly lived. Causing the monsters to keep killing the contestants to supply her with souls. This doesn’t sit will Farr Darrig who eventually steals the set of charm stones used to command them, but only briefly before they are reclaimed by DeeDee. Sent out to kill again Farr Darrig resists the magic letting one of the girls escape. She gathers the other surviving girls, who have no idea the other contestants have been murdered to flee only to learn they’re trapped in the house with DeeDee and her monsters.

I was surprised how much I enjoyed this film. For me it’s defiantly one of those so bad it’s good situations. The vast majority of the actors deliver what could be labeled sub-par performances. But this is a Full Moon production, so A-list performances aren’t something I expected. That said a hand-full of actors did do surprisingly well with what they had to work with. Chief among them is Nathan Phillips, who plays a very likable character, who while being a monster is never monstrous, Seth Peterson delivered a fun performance in the last third of the film once his character was able to develop beyond douche behind a table, and.. ok well that’s about it.

On the other side of that coin a few actors delivered extremely poor performances and at times you can tell that this film is just a paycheck. Looking at you Charlie O’Connell. I remember him best as his older brother Jerry O’Connell’s replacement in Sliders. Here it feels like he’s not even trying and walks through the entire production, delivering at best a token effort. But even worse is Jeryl Prescott, who just falls flat in every scene. This is in large part due to the poor material she had to work with, but she often hams her scenes to the point where they actually become less enjoyable.

The girls acting, well for girls hired for their looks you can tell. I was surprised to see Masumi Max as a character and while she doesn’t have the same of charismatic pull that she does as an alt model, she at least tries. The other girls, including Nikki Leigh don’t stand out looking back. Again this is due more to the script than the girls acting capabilities. I imagine it’s hard to differentiate your character when all of them have the same defining characteristic, good looks.

Final thoughts, over all I liked and have definite plans to revisit it again in the future. Sure it has a weak premise with sloppy writing and under whelming everything, but it still manages to carry a huge amount of undeniable charm. Unlucky Charms is a film that’s more than the sum of its part and one that would suggest to fans of B-Movies. What it lacks in gore it makes up with sexy ladies and silly moments. The actors that decided to pull their weight deliver strong enough performances that I found myself easily able to overlook those that didn’t. Except you O’Connell. But I digress, Unlucky Charms was easily able to hold my attention for its short run time of 70 min (Not counting the credits), something that in itself is a compliment. So all things considered I feel the need to give Unlucky Charms a higher score than it probably deserves at a 6.5/10.

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