‘Oh Mama!’ ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ dazzles at the Plaza Theatre

Rick Moranis stars in the 1986 film

Rick Moranis stars in the 1986 film “Little Shop of Horrors”, which was screened on Friday at the eight annual Plaza Theater Classic Film Festival.

Julia Hettiger, Staff Reporter

Last week, the eight annual Plaza Classic Film Festival came to a close on Sunday. Before it screened its last film, the festival hosted the cult classic “Little Shop of Horrors” starring Rick Moranis and Ellen Greene. The film follows a plant shop on Skid Row, a slummy part of town, which became famous after an employee discovers a foreign plant and displays it on their front window.

If you’re going to combine horror and comedy and turn it into a musical, you have to do it right. Before watching the movie at the film festival, I had only seen it live on stage. Live theater is always magical and enthralling because it’s happening right there in front of you. Usually when I see movies based on plays, I’m a little skeptical.

This movie however did not disappoint.

It was clearly a fan favorite because the Philanthropy Theatre was jammed packed with people eager to see the movie, which was sold out. An employee noted that to be quite impressive for the film festival.

The first thing that impressed me, something I didn’t know while watching the theatrical version, was that the score was written by Bob Gaudio, one of my all-time favorite songwriters.

What I love about “Little Shop of Horrors”, especially the way it was portrayed in the movie, is the comedy. It goes from being cheap, well-played out sarcasm to witty and smart without missing a beat, and the actors followed this rhythm nicely. They were able to capture the sarcasm without being fake but were also able to dramatize their roles at any given moment. Moranis and Greene, while seemingly polar opposites in the movie, were able to enact a charming relationship while still making it seem outlandish and farfetched.

While the movie is packed with humor, music and comedic horror, it is still able to keep an overall theme in place: what would you sacrifice for fame and fortune? Seymour was literally sacrificing his blood and own well-being, as well as the lives of people around him, so he could make money and win over his crush.

The film had the entire audience laughing with a few “ooh’s” and “awe’s” thrown into the mix and as cheesy as it sounds, the audience applauded when the movie concluded. “Little Shop” is truly a classic deserving to be played at the Plaza Classic Film Festival or any other theater willing to screen it.

Julia Hettiger may be reached at [email protected]