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Ghost Canyon

'The New Kids' (Retro VHS Style)
(James Spader, Lori Loughlin, Shannon Presby, Eric Stolz, et al / Blu-ray / R / (1985) 2019 / Mill Creek Entertainment)

Overview: A brother and sister arrive in a small town to help their relatives run an amusement park, and they find the town is terrorized by a local street gang.

Blu-ray Verdict: Teenage orphans Abby (Lori Loughlin) and Loren (Shannon Presby) go to live with their aunt and uncle in Florida, who run a combination gas station and amusement park.

Abby attracts the attention of scumbag Eddie Dutra (James Spader) and his redneck buddies. When Abby rejects them, the punks harass her and her family.

Loren tries to get even which leads to Abby being kidnapped. Now it's a life or death showdown vs the rednecks.

Not a horror movie like the poster implies but an action-thriller that sadly has nothing to do with New Kids on the Block!

The '80s was a decade full of revenge movies. Most were more brutal than this. But I suppose that might make this more accessible than, say, the Death Wish series.

The cast here is decent. Shannon Presby had a short-lived career but that appears to be by choice as he does fine here. Lori Loughlin is very pretty and personable. Every time I see one of her pre-Full House movie roles I have to wonder what the world she was smoking in the '80s that prevented her from becoming a bigger star!

We're also teased with a nude shower scene from her in this but, alas, it's just a tease. Carrot-topped Eric Stoltz plays Lori's boyfriend. I doubt I'll ever fully get his appeal.

Eddie Jones plays the likable but irresponsible uncle ("Soon enough, we're gonna be fartin' through silk") and Tom Atkins appears all-too-briefly.

The guys playing the rednecks are over-the-top goofy and not the least bit scary. The standout of the movie is, obviously, a scenery-chewing platinum blonde James Spader as the creepy villain.

It's his movie, really. This was written by Stephen Gyllenhaal, father of Maggie who would later have her first big role in 'Secretary' - which starred Spader! Two degrees of separation right there, boys and girls!

Anyway, getting back on track and the gang of school toughs that back up Spader do not seem like the kind of dudes a guy like him would be hanging with. Also, something tells me the part Spader was cast for and the part he played weren't exactly the same!

In closing, 'The New Kids' shares that special charm and energy that most of the classic from the '80s held. It's lively, it's interesting, the characters are fun and over-the-top, and it had some pretty sweet scenes too! This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.

'The New Kids' [Retro VHS '90s Style Blu-Ray] is out August 13th, 2019 via Mill Creek Entertainment.