Benny Loves You (UK, 2021)

A man’s attempt to rid himself of his childhood toy leads to horrific consequences in this British homage to Child’s Play.

Jack is a hapless loser who works as a toy designer. His attempts to create new ideas are constantly ridiculed by his boss and co-workers. On top of that, he still lives with his parents and it has affected his romance with his girlfriend and fellow co-worker Dawn. After listening to some self-help tapes. Jack decides to put himself back on track and during then, he gets rid of his childhood toy, a red plushie bear named Benny. However, Jack is about to make the biggest mistake of his life.

A force causes Benny to spring to life. When Jack’s parents die, his house is in foreclosure, Benny kills the bank representative. However, Jack soon comes up with an idea that gains him recognition at work and Benny helps him. As long as Jack promises never to get rid of him. However, Benny begins to go too far and while Jack is appreciative of some of the deaths from those who want him out of the picture, Benny sees Dawn as a threat. Jack soon realizes his mistake and he must do whatever it takes to stop the menacing Benny once and for all.

From the mind of writer, director, and star Karl Holt, this film can be described as what if Elmo meets Child’s Play? Because the titular Benny has a strange resemblance to the beloved Sesame Street character but with more bugged out eyes and big floppy ears. And one thing can be definitely said. After the days of the UK’s BBFC banning so much gore and bloodshed when it came to horror, this horror comedy takes the cake with its use of gore and bloody goodness.

Holt is great as Jack, who can’t decide at times if Benny is worth keeping or just getting rid of him upon his chaotic killing spree. Jack is seen as this boorish loser who is bullied at times and sees Benny as not just a protector but something who is there for him, but there are shades of jealousy which leads to even further bloodshed. One can’t help root for Jack seeking revenge against bullies at times and there are some cute moments with Benny when he’s not offing anyone.

The supporting cast is quite fun to watch. Claire Cartwright does a great job as Dawn, Jack’s girlfriend who only shows him up when it comes to their boss. Yet, deep down, she really cares for our hero, and we get to see some sweet tender moments between the two amidst Benny’s chaos. George Collie’s Richard is the smarmy co-worker who is the worst bully to Jack and even attempts to override him when it comes to certain aspects of their job, ticking the boss off. Richard is the kind of character you hope will get his at some point. The cops themselves, played by Anthony Styles and Darren Benedict, are not the smartest tools in the shed. They are more the bumbling type and this is noted when one sees splattered blood on a canvas and mistakes it for modern art.

The kill scenes themselves are very graphic and gruesome. One must remember, during the old days the BBFC banned anything gory and called it a “video nasty”. We see Benny totally decapitate and disembowel one victim, slice up a few others, and in the most maniacal finales, see Benny and other childhood toys go on a rampage, even against each other! You heard that correctly. Benny goes up against a robot not to mention one of the most laugh out loud death scenes in movies today.

Benny Loves You is a crazy and fun homage to Child’s Play with some graphic deaths, dark humor, and a finale that has to be seen to be believed.

WFG RATING: A

Epic Pictures, Dread Central, and Raven Banner Entertainment presents a Darkline Entertainment production. Director: Karl Holt. Producer: Karl Holt. Writer: Karl Holt. Cinematography: John Bowe and Karl Holt. Editing: Karl Holt.

Cast: Karl Holt, Claire Cartwright, George Collie, James Parsons, Anthony Styles, Darren Benedict, Lydia Hourihan, David Wayman, Greg Barnett.

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