“A killer gorilla escapes from the Detroit Zoo and goes on a murdering spree.“
You’ve seen movies about killer primates before. From ‘Planet of the Apes’ to ‘King Kong’, I guarantee you’ve never seen anything like ‘Psycho Ape’. A movie that proudly boasts itself as being the “dumbest and cheapest” killer monkey movie ever made.
‘Psycho Ape’ starts like a film with a cold open that focuses on a group of “teenaged girls” who were brutally murdered twenty-five years ago at a sleepover, by an escaped gorilla from the Detroit Zoo. The only survivor of the massacre is Nancy Banana, a teen who has an infatuation with primates. It’s also in this opening sequence where we’re introduced to Dr. Zoomis (a character who will come into play later on in the movie), who questions why the gorilla chose to spare Nancy, but brutally murder her friends.
From here, ‘Psycho Ape’ resembles less of a movie and feels more like a series of scenes smashed together, as it jumps to the present-day and we are reintroduced to the killer gorilla, who now, after twenty-five years, starts up his murderous tendencies again.
The man in the cheap-looking gorilla costume (they don’t even pretend to make it look real) then goes on a murderous rampage. It kills everyone in its path by impaling them with bananas.
The highlight had to be when the gorilla’s hand comes out of the water while an unidentified woman is in the bathtub. The gorilla is holding three bananas between its fingers, an action designed to mimic a similar scene from “Nightmare on Elm Street.”
The middle section of the film (I use the term film very loosely) takes a weirder turn than the path it was already on (I didn’t think that was possible, but I was proved wrong) when it introduces us to two sets of individuals that ultimately serve no purpose in the film.
The first is a duo who, while out trick or treating, get into a long-winded discussion about whether or not “Ratatouille” is a better movie than “Toy Story.” This argument causes the cast and crew to break character to join in on this argument. This is something that would have been normally cut out of a film, but instead, they chose to leave it in. This is when you realise that you aren’t watching a movie, but rather a series of unrelated thoughts that don’t make sense together at all.
The next pair we meet are two “sisters” who proceed to spend the movie walking around a park, proclaiming how they plan to catch the gorilla for themselves. In the end, this story does not pay off in any way.
“Psycho Ape” then tries to build upon the story from the cold opening when the gorilla visits Nancy. Dr. Zoomis has been after this gorilla for a long time. She briefly mentions and then quickly moves on from the traumatic things that happened to her at the hands of this gorilla. She befriends him and tries to hide him from him.
“Psycho Ape” next jumps another twenty-five years (time is pointless in this movie) where the gorilla manages to escape his confinement once more and reunite with Nancy.
While being pursued by Dr. Zoomis (yeah, he’s still alive), the duo goes on a Bonnie and Clyde murder spree (because Nancy is now suddenly a killer). After killing Dr. Zoomis multiple times (Time is irrelevant, so why shouldn’t death be?) the two rivals square off one final time at the top of the Empire State Building. But again, death is pointless in this movie, just like this final confrontation.
In the end, nothing of relevance happens, and “Psycho Ape” ends as we are given an update on the status of our cast of characters.
This is not a film that the majority of people are going to enjoy, as it’s more of a passion project than an actual movie, and was developed for a niche market.
This is a film that can’t honestly be given an official star rating, as it’s evident that this is not a legitimate film. This is designed to be bad. That’s its intention. It leaves behind bloopers, real-life arguments, and you repeatedly hear instances of the crew laughing at their film.
If self-aware movies are your thing, you might take something away from this movie, but if you’re looking for anything serious, or anything resembling a movie, this is not a film for you.