Movie Review: The Ghastly Love of Johnny X / Cert: TBC / Director: Paul Bunnel / Screenplay: Paul Bunnell / Starring: Will Keenan, Creed Batton, De Anna Joy Brooks, Reggie Bannister / Official Site: johnnyxmovie.com / Release Date: TBC /
Like the Irish short comedy from 1998 by Edna Hughes, Flying Saucer Rock 'n Roll, writer/director Paul Bunnell has captured the heart and soul of the ‘50s in a fun-filled, satirical, musical, sci-fi romp in The Ghastly Love of Johnny X.
Bad boy Johnny X (Will Keenan, who you could tell had a lot of fun in this role) and his outlaw gang of misfits known as the Ghastly Ones are exiled to planet Earth by the Grand Inquisitor (legendary screen great Kevin McCarthy in his final performance). It’s here that Johnny X searches for his ex-girlfriend, Bliss (De Anna Joy Brooks in an outstanding performance) who jilted him and stole the Resurrection Suit that can control the actions of anyone - living or dead.
Bliss, in need of an ally, seduces reluctant soda jerk Chip (Les Williams) to help her and the chase is on when they encounter his uncle, a sleazy show promoter named King Clayton (Reggie Bannister), late night TV talk show host Cousin Quilty (Paul Williams in a hilarious role) and the twisted but ailing rock and roll legend, Mickey O'Flynn, the Man With the Grin (brilliantly portrayed by Creed Bratton) who is a cross between Elvis and Roy Orbison - or an older version of Eddie Van Halen depending on your viewpoint.
The musical numbers are outstanding with one that takes place in a diner with the ensemble cast; Bliss seducing Chip at a drive in Movie Theater with "These Lips Never Lie" and a run down stage where Creed Bratton performs a get-up-and-dance song, "Big Green, Bug-Eyed Monster."
Acting is first rate all around and cinematography is top notch by Francisco Bulgarelli. The soundtrack by Ego Plum is also very memorable and lively.
The Ghastly Love of Johnny X is a terrific homage to all the '50s sci-fi movies we know and love.
Expected Rating: 8 out of 10