Thursday, August 14, 2014

Film Review: Leprechaun (1993)

Leprechaun (Review)
United States/1993
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

"...the type of film that makes you want a remake."

A father and his daughter, Tory (Jennifer Aniston), move into the O'Grady house where a deadly leprechaun (Warwick Davis) slumbers in the basement.

Leprechaun mostly follows diva Tory and house painters Nathan, Alex, and Ozzie, after Ozzie unwittingly releases the leprechaun from a crate. Aside from Ozzie, who is a bit dimwitted, no one knows about the leprechaun. Anyway, the leprechaun wants his 100 pieces of gold, so he goes on a murderous rampage until he gets them. That's pretty much everything that happens in Leprechaun. The ending was really cheesy and predictable.

Leprechaun just doesn't really work. It's a horror-comedy but without much of either. The film's suspense and tension are either mild or nonexistent most of the time, so there is never any effective buildup. Most of the jump-scares are duds. There are only a few death scenes, so the special effects/makeup have a minor presence; they're underwhelming and disappointing, anyway. It has some cool ideas, like the Leprechaun being able to change his voice, but it barely uses them. As for the humor, it's hit-or-miss. I laughed a few times, like the Leprechaun's use of vehicles, but some of the humor was cringe-worthy bad.

The acting is all-around mediocre. Jennifer Aniston plays a typical character -- the role isn't demanding, but she fits the character. Warwick Davis... fits the character, too, I suppose. I guess there really isn't much acting going on. Otherwise, its a standard horror film in music and cinematography. The makeup effects on the Leprechaun are good -- I like the design, it's probably the only part of the film anyone could possible find a bit creepy. Writer and director Mark Jones fails to conjure any horror and hardly any laughs, partly due to the failure to craft atmosphere and tension, as well as some very cheesy writing.

Overall, Leprechaun is a bad movie. It's not the "good" type of b-movie, unless you like laughing at underdeveloped concepts. It has a few funny moments and a few decent scenes and ideas, but not nearly enough to justify a feature-length runtime. This is the type of film that makes you want a remake. Avoid it unless you're revisiting for nostalgia.

Score: 3/10
Parental Guide: Strong violence and blood.

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