out of 4
All-Reviews.com Movie/Video Review
Little Shop Of Horrors
Starring: Jonathan Haze, Jackie Joseph|
Director: Roger Corman
RunTime: 70 Minutes
Release Date: September 1960
Genres: Comedy, Horror
|*Also starring: ||Mel Welles, Dick Miller, Myrtle Vail, Jack Nicholson, Marie Windsor||
Review by Brian Koller
3½ stars out of 4
For those who like their comedy black, with no
cream or sugar, "The Little Shop of Horrors" is
for you. Made in two days with a cast of unknowns,
with a script written in under a week, and featuring
a story about a talking man-eating plant, the
film is far better than it has any expectation of
Gravis Mushnick (Mel Welles) runs a struggling skid row
florist shop. Other employees are clumsy fool Seymour
(Jonathan Haze) and ebullient dimwit Audrey (Jackie Joseph).
Seymour's hilariously hypocondriac mother is played by
Myrle Vail. Seymour can only keep his pathetic job if
he can nurse to health an unusual crowd-drawing plant,
a plant that needs human blood in order to grow.
Seymour sort-of commits a series of murders to feed
the plant, which soon overruns the florist shop.
The legend behind "The Little Shop of Horrors" is
that a studio executive gave low-budget director
Roger Corman a challenge: to make a film using a
storefront set before it was to be torn down. Necessity
is the mother of art as well as invention, and
"The Little Shop of Horrors" could be Corman's best
film. Charles Griffith, who had previously collaborated
with Corman on the cult classic "A Bucket of Blood",
wrote the viciously funny script.
Ignored upon release, "The Little Shop of Horrors"
slowly gained notoriety over the years. Its status
of a cult film was helped by the presence of then-
obscure Jack Nicholson, who has a small part as a
lunatic masochistic dental patient. The film was
remade as "Please Don't Eat My Mother" (1972)
and the sequel was "Little Shop" (1991). It eventually
become a Broadway musical, which became an excellent
film version in 1986.
Copyright © 1997 Brian Koller
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