A Whole Lotta Kids in the Hall

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Brain Candy A Sweet Treat For Old And New Kids Fans

This review is property of its writer and publication and is reprinted here without permission.

Toronto Star
By Liz Braun

Kids In The Hall: Brain Candy has moments of inspired silliness and will no doubt prove to be nirvana to those fans of the troupe who have followed this quintet of laffmeisters from TV to the big screen.

As a movie, it stinks.

This is beside the point.

Brain Candy is a pastiche of bizarre characters and scenes stuck together into a feature-length film.

The story involves the invention of a Prozac-like drug that induces happiness; patients remember the happiest moment of their lives, and their momentary bliss is locked in by the medication.

Each of the Kids plays several characters, but in the roles that move the plot along, Kevin McDonald plays the scientist who invents the new happy pill, 'Gleemonex.' Mark McKinney is the ruthless head of the drug company that manufactures Gleemonex and puts it on the market before all testing is complete.

Scott Thompson plays (in drag) one Mrs. Hurdicure, a patient who takes Gleemonex. Bruce McCulloch (in drag) is Alice, one of the scientists, and he's also Grivo, an angry heavy metal artist (soon to become a happy popster, thanks to Gleemonex).

David Foley is Marv, yes-man at the drug company.

What happens? As you'd imagine, a pill that makes everybody happy all the time soon proves to be a disaster.

You can't overlook how very autobiographical Brain Candy often seems: Some of the themes are the temptation to sell out to big business, the expectations involved in being 'happy' (or perhaps funny) all the time, things moving along too quickly, and so forth.

The main story aside, Brain Candy has some pleasantly bizarre bits and characters thrown into the mix that are far more fun -- McCulloch as a seedy marketing guy named Cisco, for example, or Scott Thompson's in-the-closet gay father figure, Wally.

The need to force their work into a cohesive narrative to satisfy somebody's idea of a movie would seem to be what went wrong with Brain Candy.

Having said that, we can introduce you to several dozen teenagers who think nothing at all went wrong with it.

Kelly Makin (National Lampoon's Senior Trip) directs Brain Candy from a script co-written by Saturday Night Live's Norm Hiscock and four of the five Kids. The film is a Lorne Michaels Production, which looks like as good a place as any, and maybe better, to lay blame.

The Kids In The Hall have always been a love 'em or hate 'em comedy phenom, so act accordingly on their movie.

Brain Candy is a fan's delight. All others beware.



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