The Banana Splits Movie is a 2019 horror comedy film directed by Danishka Esterhazy (Level 16, The Trials of Rasputin, Suddenly Ever After, & Black Field). It’s based on the 1968 Hanna-Barbera children’s television series.It was written by Jed Elinoff & Scott Thomas (R.L. Stine’s The Haunting Hour, Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, Celebrity Deathmatch, & Malibu Rescue). It was produced by Adam Friedlander (Leprechaun Returns, Lake Placid: Legacy, & The Empty Man), Daniel Iron (The Red Violin, Fido, & Citizen Gangster), & Lance Samuels (Strike Back, Shark Killer, Generation Kill, & The Bang Bang Club). It’s making it’s television premier on the Syfy channel on September 21, 2019.
Harley Williams (played by: Finlay Wojtak-Hissong from The Kindness of Strangers & Dreamkatcher) is a huge fan of The Banana Splits. It’s a successful children’s television series featuring four animatronic characters that includes Fleegle, Bingo, Drooper & Snorky (all played by: Eric Bauza from Who Framed Roger Rabbit 2, DuckTales, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Woody Woodpecker, Transformers: Robots in Disguise, Guardians of the Galaxy, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Batman Ninja, & Ultimate Spider-Man) with their co-star Stevie (played by: Richard White). As a birthday present, his parents Beth (played by: Dani Kind from Wynonna Earp, Workin’ Moms, The Night Before Halloween, & Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer) & stepdad Mitch (played by: Steve Lund from Bitten, Haven, Yukonic!, & Hemlock Grove) take him along with his older brother Austin (played by: Romeo Carere from Pyewacket) plus his classmate Zoe (played by: Maria Nash from Super Mighty Makers) to a live taping of The Banana Splits at Taft Studios. Upon arrival at the studio, they meet several audience & staff members. This includes Paige (played by: Naledi Majola from Projek Dina & Trackers), Thadd (played by: Kiroshan Naidoo from Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell), Poppy (played by: Celina Martin from Level 16 & The Other Kingdom), Parker (played by: Lia Sachs), Jonathan (played by: Keeno Lee Hector from Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell & 24 Hours to Live), & Doug (played by: Vash Singh from Critters Attack!).
As the outing is getting ready Andy (played by: Daniel Fox from Generation Kill, Safe House, Eye in the Sky, & Momentum), the new vice president of programming informs the show’s producer Rebecca (played by: Sara Canning from A Series of Unfortunate Events, Level 16, War for the Planet of the Apes, & The Vampire Diaries) that The Banana Splits is being canceled after the recording. A drunk Stevie, whose true arrogant & abusive nature is shown informs the Banana Splits about the cancellation while revealing his hatred for them. The Banana Splits settings go haywire after this, causing them act extremely different. The audience & staff is no longer safe from their favorite television show characters. The Banana Splits hunt them down one by one looking for vengeance after this devastating news. Snorky is the only one that hasn’t went crazy, can the rest of them be saved from these killing machines????
The Banana Splits Movie is a slasher flick featuring the lovable Hanna-Barbera children’s television show characters from the late 60s? Yes, it’s true & I know it’s probably very confusing for any of the die hard fans from that early TV show. That’s one of the last franchises that I’ve ever expect them to turn into a horror film. It has a nice blend of humor here & the script is very fun. Lots of unlikable people that you want to see get murdered by these unique killers. The Banana Splits Movie features some high quality special fx with plenty of gore to make any horror fan happy, it had some brutal & creative kills which is actually rare these days in modern slashers. Eric Bauza performs all the voices for The Banana Splits, he manages to keep every role unique with a different tone & delivery. Besides him, Dani Kind was the other standout in this when it came to the acting. I hate to say it but the rest of the cast were nothing special & some of their performances were beyond awful in this. Luckily, this film was very entertaining& it kept you wanting more, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Warner Bros! This 1080p (1.78:1) transfer looks great on blu ray especially for being a direct to video release. The Banana Splits set at Taft Studios visually stands out from everything here. Lots of cool sets up & variety for the location. The Fleegle, Bingo, Drooper & Snorky characters look awesome & bring you back to thoae earlier days. Obviously, they are nothing like those originals & much more fun now. It has two audio options which includes English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 & Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1 on the release. All the dialogue is crystal clear, the mayhem is elevated, & lots of silly kid songs like you would expect from a children’s show has a nice boost to them. It also has English SDH subtitles. For being a low budget production, it looks & sounds like a bigger film.
Let’s discuss the special features from Warner Bros. “Banana Splits: Behind the Horror” is a little over 8 minutes.It has interviews with director Danishka Esterhazy, actors Sara Canning, Dani Kind, Romeo Carere, Richard White, Steve Lund, Kiroshan Naidoo, Finlay Wojtak-Hissong, & various members of the production. They chat about turning the original children’s show into a horror film. They say the original characters already looked creepy. They talk about the gory & creative kills from the feature. They bring up doing practical rather than CGI for special fx. “Terror on Set” is a little over 6 minutes. It has interviews with director Danishka Esterhazy, actors Sara Canning, Dani Kind, Romeo Carere, Lia Sachs, Celina Martin, & various members of the production. They chat about the production design & the various sets. They mention the style of the feature, They bring up the difference between the games when it came to the kids & adults. “Breaking News! The Banana Splits Massacre” is almost 2 minute news cast after all the chaos from The Banana Splits. It has a few “Trailers” from Warner Bros. It also has a slipcover, a digital code, & a DVD copy of the release. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!