Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Paddy's Day, me laddies!

It's St. Paddy's Day as I write this, so here's a bonus review to celebrate: My take on the original "Leprechaun" movie!

Leprechaun (1992)
Starring: Warwick Davis, Jennifer Aniston, John Sanderford, Ken Olant, Robert Hy Gorman, and Mark Holton
Director: Mark Jones
Rating: Six of Ten Stars

An angry leprechaun (Davis) goes on killing spree while searching for his stolen pot o' gold.

This may come across as damning with faint praise, but "Leprechaun" remains the best movie that Jennifer Aniston has been in, and she actually shows that she can act. (The tight pants she wears also help bolster her performance.)

With the bashing of an overratd star out of the way (although she wasn't a star yet when she made this film), how does the rest of the movie measure up? Fairly decently. The evil, murderous leprechaun of the title dispatches his victims with a level of gore and glee that only Freddy Krueger can match... and some of the characters are so annoying you're almost happy to see him bump them off. (On the other hand, the characters that we're supposed to be rooting for, are well enough scripted and acted that we care if they live or die.)

The film goes a great job of balancing comedy and horror, but it sags a bit in the middle, and the ending threatens to sputter and stall as it's gearing up for the climax. With some 10 or so minutes snipped out here and there, this could be one of the great horror comedies. (Maybe the TV version does just that, although I suspect they've edited out the wrong bits. This is one film where I'd hate to see the gore edited out... some of it's intermingled with the movie's funniest moments.)

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