Hi, it’s Burl! Yes, it’s time for another review, and this one is of a horror movie made in Texas called The Outing! Actually it was called The Lamp when it was made, and that title makes a lot more sense, but somewhere along the line it became The Outing!
Ha ha, but I’m here to review the movie, not the title! Here’s another fairly obscure entry in the Gloopy 80s Makeup genre, right alongside such gems as Mausoleum and The Kindred! It opens with a lengthy prologue involving some not-too-bright sneakthieves busting into an old lady’s house because they’re convinced she’s hoarding unimaginable riches in there! No, sorry folks, it’s just a magic lamp! They manage to kill the old lady but then are themselves slaughtered by a supernatural force!
The next time we see the lamp, it’s in the custody of a museum curator! His daughter Alex, meanwhile, is going through a moody period of her life, and, due to a brutish ex-boyfriend who won’t take no for an answer, is experiencing romantic travails as well! But her high school class is going on a field trip to her dad’s museum, and so the next thing you know, Alex and her friends are sneaking into the place to spend the night amongst the exhibits! But, ha ha, the genie, or djinn, inside the lamp is going to make the evening a memorable one!
This one starts off pretty well, and then there’s what seems like a really long build-up introducing us to the museum curator, his assistant, his daughter Alex, her boyfriend, her thug of an ex and his little buddy, the lady teacher who is the curator’s love interest, and then all of Alex’s friends on top of everything else; and then all their interlinking stories and situations are set up one-by-one in a rather plodding way! But once they’re locked in the museum and the djinn is on the loose, the pace picks up and we get some pretty bloody genie action, along with other treats like snakes, living mummies and flying spears! Also there’s a night watchman who likes to wander around singing The Barber of Seville at full fortissimo!
The genie folds people in half, transfixes them with spears, raises them into wildly spinning ceiling fans and presses their heads inside masks! He eventually appears in the form of a large puppet and chases them around the museum! He can turn invisible and fly through space and time, but luckily for the characters, locked doors still give him quite a bit of trouble!
In the end, The Outing is a silly movie with some slow bits, but enough lively ridiculousness to make it entertaining! I guess it’s a pretty typical 1980s horror picture! And, an admission! Even though she wears terrible clothing and isn’t such a great actor, I still developed a bit of a crush on the lead actress, Andra St. Ivanyi, ha ha! She reminded me a bit of the girl from A Nightmare on Elm Street 2, who I also had a crush on! Ha ha, I give The Outing not one but two screwtop rubies, just because I’m feeling generous and still somewhat in the grip of my little crush!