Little Shop of Horrors (10/16/12)

Little Shop of HorrorsMovie Two Hundred Thirty Five

In Little Shop of Horrors, a man finds a mysterious plant that becomes a huge sensation but has a unique appetite.

Seymour Krelborn (Rick Moranis) is a nerdy man working in a small, failing flower shop alongside the owner, Mr. Mushnik (Vincent Gardenia), and the woman he secretly fancies, Audrey (Ellen Greene). One day, after an unexpected solar eclipse, Seymour finds a strange little plant  and dubs it Audrey II. After they decide to put Audrey II in the window of the shop, the little plant draws a huge crowd. The plant soon gets sick and starts wilting and Seymour finds the plant has a taste for blood. When the plant grows too large for sucking on Seymour’s pricked fingers, Seymour learns that Audrey II can talk and it is demanding more than just a few drops of blood.

Although Little Shop of Horrors is kind of a remake of the 1960 Roger Corman film of the same title, this 1986 version is actually the film version of the off-Broadway musical. Director Frank Oz, who worked as a puppeteer with Jim Henson, captures both the comedy and horror – as well as the music – in a brilliant mix. Oz’s background in puppeteering makes Audrey II really shine, and even close to 20 years after its release, the effects still look pretty great.

However, the stars of Little Shop of Horrors for me not the effects but are actually the cameos; We have Christopher Guest, Steve Martin, John Candy, Bill Murray, and Jim Belushi all making guest appearances. Since Bill Murray is a god, he pretty much makes every film a masterwork. Considering my general distaste of musicals, Little Shop of Horrors has been a favorite of mine since I was a kid. The songs are fun, funny, unique, and catchy. My wife, who had never seen Little Shop of Horrors before, and I were both still singing Skid Row a week after watching it. The voice work for Audrey II was done by musician Levi Stubbs, who has such a unique voice that gives the man-eating plant a Motown swagger that is both hilarious, menacing, and fun to listen to.

Little Shop of Horrors has been a favorite of mine since I was young and though I hadn’t seen it in far too long, I still remembered much of the music and admittedly “got” more of the humor as an adult. The film has held up better than I expected, actually. The recently released blu-ray gives this film the love it deserves and even includes the cut, original ending. Little Shop of Horrors is still a unique film experience (where else can you find a musical about a man-eating plant?) and the music will likely get your toes tapping.

I give it 5 “Feed Me, Seymour”s out of 5.


Rotten Tomatoes


27 responses to “Little Shop of Horrors (10/16/12)

  1. Nice review. I love this one as well. Like you I’m not a particular fan of musicals but this one is one of my favorites. Bill Murray’s cameo is the funniest part of the film (he’s one of those comedians whose presence can just make you laugh). I have to ask which version do you prefer: the director’s cut or the theatrical edition?

    • I always liked Steve Martin’s character growing up but now I really appreciate Murray’s character. The original ending just goes on for way too long, but otherwise I kind of liked it…but it kind of changes the tone of the whole film. Basically, Audrey II takes over the world in a monster movie spoof.

  2. Nice review, Andy! It really is a great musical. I watched this a few years ago, so I don’t remember a whole chunk of the humour, or Bill Murray’s cameo. I think I’ll have to watch it again for that sole reason, haha.

  3. I actually like this one more than the Corman original, I know it is a slight difference but having watched the two I feel this one is better. Plus I like the “I Am Your Dentist” scene with Steve Martin.

  4. FEED ME SEYMOUR! Love this movie. It’s a blast from the past. There is a picture of me watching this movie on the tube with my mouth opened in amazement. A must watch movie, fo’ sure!

  5. I remember watching both versions as a kid and enjoying them both quite a bit… I don’t remember much in the way of details, though. Once I can get my hands on this version, I’m planning to revisit both films.

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