Leprechaun

Top o’ the morning to ye!

What with St. Patrick’s Day coming up fast, it is now finally time to unearth my long-buried Leprechaun series. When I originally reviewed these, I did a “Lep Survival Guide” and it was, to be honest, kind of shit. In my defence, it was terrible entirely because of the films themselves- they’ve just got too little in common to remotely pretend that it’s the same monster, so attempting to condense it into a mock survival guide was an exercise in futility. I have now learnt my lesson and as a result, I’m going to review them in order, and then for the last part of this series add my hopes for the next film. This should be fun.

First up, the original Leprechaun film.

 For the life of me, I cannot see how they managed to squeeze a whole franchise out of this. Seriously. I mean, I like it, but it doesn’t exactly scream out “needs 5 sequels”. However, this is the film that introduced Warwick Davis career defining role as the titular psychotic Irish magic midget. This is the film that also features a pre-nose job/ crash diet Jennifer Aniston  and it’s a crying shame that the stuck up cow denies the existence of this film. It isn’t as if the rest of her career is deep fried gold.

Actually, now I come to think about it, that pisses me off. Leprechaun is not only a cracking piece of schlock, but also a better fucking movie than half the trash she stars in (Picture Perfect leaping to mind).

Anyhow, on with the film. Leprechaun opens with this crusty old dude that’s robbed Warwick’s pot of gold and taken it back to his farm in Asshole, middle America (it’s near Buttfuck, Ohio). Little does he know that the Leprechaun has stowed away and is, frankly, pissed that the old geezer has stolen his gold. He takes angry vengeance, before a series of events  that border on the bizarre see him trapped in a crate. Anyhow, a few years later the nauseating Reding family move into the farmhouse to escape from the stress of LA. Obviously, as they’ve just moved in, they hire a few local inbreds to do some DIY on the old place. However, employment is clearly rough in the flyover states so they hire a local crew that comes complete with ret-er, lovable fool. Lovable fool frees the Leprechaun, who is pissed, and escapes to tell his story. Except nobody believes him because he’s “special” and also because it’s a fucking leprechaun. Oh and, he manages to eat a piece of the Leprechaun’s gold as well.

Cue, shenanigans, bloody murder, bad poetry and the Leprechaun being eventually defeated.

So what’s good about this film? To be honest, in comparison with the rest of the series, not that much. Human tripod Warwick is OK as the Leprechaun, but it’s certainly one of his lesser performances. He’s a bit lacklustre, and hasn’t turned the malevolent glee up to 11 (or 5.5 in his case) yet. Jennifer Aniston is Jennifer Aniston and therefore annoying by definition (she certainly isn’t hot yet either). The rest of the support aren’t really worth talking about, except I’ve seen this film far too many times for a well balanced individual and I still want to throttle the annoying child.

Nevertheless, this is a fun. The Leprechaun, aside from being psychotic, is also a miniature car thief (he robs a go-kart), kills people in inventive ways (the pogo-stick is genius), and has a quite inexplicable shoe fetish. Apparently nothing distracts a homicidal cod-irish supernatural dwarf like a good shoe. He’s also got a neat line in doggerel (I suspect it is deliberately bad)- “This old Lep, he played one, he went pogo on your lung” being a prime example.

However, this is (aside from the utterly shit part 6) the worst of the series. Muchlike with Chucky, they didn’t understand that they had a concept that transcends ridicule. It’s a psychotic Leprechaun, for the love of God! As a direct result of this, Mark Jones attempted to make a straight horror film and it has to be said that it has mixed success. The kills themselves are probably the only convincing ones in the series, and the makeup and effects are also above par, but at the end of the day, Leprechaun is a concept that screams out “comedy” rather than Horror, and by downplaying the very evident humour of the situation, this decision produced the most serious and second least entertaining entry.

At the end of the day, this is a reasonably entertaining piece of schlock. It never touches the greatness of the later sequels, because for some reason they thought they were making an actual horror film (why?), but it certainly doesn’t wallow in the depths of such utter shit as Child’s Play 3. It’s fun but it isn’t exactly Earth shattering stuff, and if anything the serious tone of it hurts the film. There are glimpses that they knew they were dealing with something ridiculous (the shoe scene), but these glimpses are few and far between.

As each Leprechaun film has fuck all in common with its predecessors (with one exception- the worst of the series) and gives nary a damn for continuity, then this one is easily missable. I still give it the occasional spin, and it isn’t the worst Horror film I’ve ever seen (it isn’t even the worst one I’ve seen this month), but it’s probably the Leprechaun film I watch the least.

I’m just astounded that they managed to make a franchise from this…

To be continued,

Jarv

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About Jarv

Workshy cynic, given to posting reams of nonsense on the internet and watching films that have inexplicably got a piss poor reputation.

44 responses to “Leprechaun”

  1. Jarv says :

    *groans*

    I thought this was a pretty funny review, and it’s about to be hijacked by menstrual chat.

    For the second day running.

  2. Droid says :

    I’ve seen this film far too many times for a well balanced individual

    I don’t understand this sentence. You start off referencing yourself, then end by referencing some other, “well balanced” person.

    I’ve not seen any of the Lep series yet. I’ve got all six sitting at home, waiting for me though.

    • Jarv says :

      You nearly had me then.

      I was going to go back and correct whatever idiotic grammatical mistake I’d made.

      Bastard.

      If you’re going to watch the whole series, then this one and 6 are the most missable. It’s from 3 onwards that they become proper comedy. 2 falls somewhere in the middle- it adds the Leprechaun’s alcohilism and the Dwarf party.

  3. Jarv says :

    I’m starting to wish that someone would make a film with Jennifer Aniston as a nauseating 30-something career woman looking for love (possibly with Hugh Grant), but unfortunately gets butchered by an irate Warwick Davis who escapes from her box of Lucky Charms.

    Did you see Frank, I used your “Pint sized stabbery” tag.

  4. Droid says :

    I think Frankie forgot to take his meds. He’s in a mood.

  5. Tom_Bando says :

    No no no–there’s also that episode of the Kojak Movies(TM) from 1990–where Strategic Guest Star(TM) Jennifer Anniston plays the hot new secretary in the dept. There is a bonding moment, chemistry, and you see Theo walking outta their rather dishevelled motel Room intoning, as he smokes his lolli-Who Loves Ya Baby?

    Just for kicks, it’s referenced in the script that Rachel there is his god-daughter.

    As the banjos PLAY-!

  6. Jarv says :

    Daily- with the finish on next Wednesday which is St. Patrick’s day.

    I’m doing a wishlist of things I want in the new Leprechaun film/ good ideas and things I really don’t want to see

  7. Jarv says :

    Also I do like this film, it’s just dialled down insanity compared to the later films. I love the scene with the cop, and the pogo stick, and the shoe scene.

    If the sequels didn’t exist then it would be a perfectly good horror film. But the sequels are flat out hilarious.

  8. kloipy says :

    Jarv, amazing review, the ‘human tripod’ killed me. I agree with you on this one. I actually bought it on VHS a long time ago and they were actually doing a contest through the tape to get to Ireland, and I shit you not one of the questions was “Where does the Lep come from”. I do enjoy parts of this movie, the pogo stick being the main one. But it also has the classic “Fuck you Lucky Charms” line at the end. I think you are on to something with the shoe fetish. I also think he suffers from OCD and Autism.

    • Jarv says :

      Cheers Kloipy.

      It’s hard to write about this one and the second one, because 3,4,5 are so fucking epic. 4 especially is batshit insane.

      However, this one is the least tongue in cheek of them.

      • kloipy says :

        4 is crazy, even 3 has its great moments. I think I gotta go with 5 as the best of the series. Just because it’s filled with so much weird shit. It’s like 4 seperate movies in 1. I knew as soon as Ice T pulled that tiny baseball bat out of his Afro that things were going to be good

      • Jarv says :

        I agree- 4 is batshit insane and has MITTENSCHPIDER+ Gratuitous nudity.

        I go with 5 because it’s just a better film, and Ice-T is fucking incredible in it- his bit on the phone with threatening to cut some poor guy’s cock off, feed it to his pitbull, collect the shit, burn it, then feed him the ashes is just golden.

        Warwick is excellent in that one.

        Worst of the series, and a crushing disappointment is part 6.

  9. kloipy says :

    I never saw 6 because I had heard it was really terrible. I really hope this is one series that doesn’t get a reboot

    • Jarv says :

      It isn’t. It’s getting a sequel. I know who is making it, but can’t get it confirmed.

      • kloipy says :

        oh God, WHY! I guess as long as Warwick is in it

      • Jarv says :

        He is indeed.

        The beauty of the Leprechaun series is that they don’t give a fuck about continuity, so can do whatever they want. I’m saving my suggestions for the last Leprechaun column.

        At the moment, the status of the rumour is still “overheard in pub”, but I’m trying to get something solid confirmed. Well, I say trying, I mean “hoping to bump into the guys that work for the production house in my local”.

      • kloipy says :

        dude, if you do meet them you gotta get a scoop, maybe Warwick would come for an interview. I hear he requires a ‘small’ fee

      • just pillow talk says :

        You had mentioned that a while back, right?

        Since I’ve never seen 3 – 5, I’ll have to throw them in my queue.

      • Jarv says :

        WHat- You’ve seen 2 and 6?

        You;ve never witnessed the glory of Mittenschpider or an Alien death sentence being given? Or Mack daddy Onassis and zombie Ho’s?

        Rectify this. Stat.

      • just pillow talk says :

        I’ve seen the first two…not the sixth.

        I was purposely ignoring it per your and Kloipy’s feelings on the subject.

      • Jarv says :

        A wise man.

  10. Droid says :

    This summer is the summer of the action buddy comedy, but instead of a sensible black guy and a CArazy! white guy it’s the clueless female and the professional superspy/bounty hunter/whatever.

    Theres The Bounty Hunter, some shit called Killers with Demi Moores husband and the chick out of Knocked Up, and the Cruise/Diaz one.

  11. Continentalop says :

    You guys have seen all six Lep movies? Fuck. I don’t know if I should admire you or pity you.

  12. koutchboom says :

    You know this movie scared me as a kid. Also it always pissed me off how they found a 4-leaf clover after like 5 minutes of looking.

  13. MORBIUS says :

    This is the only Leprecaun film I have seen, and that was on TV, commercials and probably chopped to shit. But apparently that wasn’t a bad thing. Nice write-up Jarv, looking forward to your evisceration of the rest of the series.

  14. koutchboom says :

    Man having caught the end to this the other day I don’t know why or how I ever found it scary as a kid.

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