Hello from South Africa!
Long time fan, first time writer. Thanks to your site I was able to relive the memory of a movie that scared the bejesus out of me as a kid, “The Haunted” about the Smurl Haunting. I’m hoping you can -please- point me in the direction of another childhood trauma. Here are the deets, bit of a read, but I hope you will find it interesting.
In South Africa we had an early subscription based TV channel called M-Net. One of it’s regularly scheduled program slots was K-TV. (Kids television.) During the school holidays they would have “the K-TV holidays special” which meant extended broadcast hours and also movies that we would never have a chance to see otherwise. (This was the late 80s to mid 90s)
Thanks to them I saw so many weird movies that I may need to revist Kindetraumas services in the future. The titles I do remember catching were “Robotech the movie” (That weird butchered one which flopped in the cinema) the Robotech Sentinels pilot episode, The Peanut Butter Solution…that kind of stuff.
One of the films we saw was about a spoiled upper middle class kid (live action film) who had a ton of cool toys and basically could regularly pick any toy he wanted from the toy store. He offers his Euro friend the opportunity to get a toy, but his friend turns him down and shows him a ball with lights on it. The friend tells him he needs no other toys except this ball. So of course our “hero” steals this ball for himself.
That night his mom has to go out, leaving him home alone. The ball activates and his toys come to life and try to murder him. I remember a cackling skeleton and an almost Tyco looking train set that tried to shoot him, as well as others. The vacuum cleaner also tries to murder him and then he hears his friends distorted voice coming from the ball taunting him. (the movie starts to veer into wtf territory)
He heads downstairs and encounters his mom, except it’s not his mom it’s actually a freaky killer cyborg version of her. (no reason for it..just insanity.) This thing chases him out the house and his real mom arrives home and runs it over.
I know it sounds a bit like a fever dream, but I have a buddy who also saw it. We connected via our love for the film on the he-man forums. Coincidentally he is in the toy design biz himself now. Helping design action figures for Battletoads.
I have tried EVERY source, from repeated word combos on google and youtube, to keyword trawling on IMDB and am now searching archive.org. I find it worrying that there is no sign of it as I think it would be insansely popular online with the ongoing trend of adult toy collectors and retro revivals. I mean, not a single hint of it??? It was definitely not a South African production, I think possibly it was dubbed into english which means the original title might be very obscure.
It is not a holiday themed movie, it is not part of Silent Night, Deadly night…I have no idea what it was.
Sorry for the wordy mail, thanks for reading. Any help at all would be so very appreciated.
All the Best!