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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Movie Review: Leprechaun: Origins

Do you think it's ok to use strangers to pay your debt of blood? In August 2014, a small town was doing what ever they could not to lose anymore lives.

Directing this 90 minute horror is Zach Lipovsky.

Some of the cast is: Stephanie Bennett as Sophie, Andrew Dunbar as Ben, Melissa Roxburgh as Jeni, Brendan Fletcher as David, Garry Chalk as Hamish, Tech Grant as Sean and Dylan "Hornswoggle" Postl as Leprechaun.

In 1993 the first Leprechaun film hit the world thanks to creator Mark Jones. Over the time 5 sequels followed up continuing to tell the Leprechauns tells of terror. Now, as goes for some many other flicks, it's time for a reboot. This time around World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) decided to jump on board with
this one. Why? Because WWE wants to expand their field of... entertainment. Personally, I wish they would keep their brand of entertainment in the ring. It's not that they don't have the stars to pull off good movies. It's that they don't seem to find good movies to put their stars in.

Harris Wilkinson wrote the screenplay for this reboot that was (somehow) based on the characters by Mark Jones. Except for the movie name and subject matter (leprechauns, gold and death) I'm not too sure how this has anything to do with Jones's previous work. However, this could have been a decent stand alone title and they could have left the reboot for something else. The script is seriously simple, you get just enough story to excuse people being killed and keep things moving forward. Also, there's just enough character development to make you not care who lives or dies.

The playthrough was ok, it had trouble holding my attention the entire time but for the most part it did good. The pace of the film moved pretty quick, which was kind of a down side because everything flew by and was over without really getting anything done. I'm sure you've seen this type of movie before. "Hey here we are, lets party, oh crap bad stuff is happening, why is this happening..." and then people start dying. At which point the credits roll and you're wondering, "Seriously? That's how I just spent 90 minutes of my life?"
                                                 


I thought the special effects looked good, especially during the (sometimes) gory attacks, but I didn't like the new look of the leprechaun. It was like a hairless monkey... demon thing, and not really all that scary looking. More like a poor science experiment that should have been put out of it's misery, but then escaped. Other than that, like I said the rest of the effects looked good. Now, things do get a little gory from time to time; not a lot, but a few scenes get messy.

Cast was ok, and a few of the people even did good. The main problem was the script, there just wasn't enough of it for the cast to really work with. Everyone gets enough to say to move the scene along, so there really wasn't a way for someone to drop the ball acting-wise. Of course the big deal about this flick is that the leprechaun was played by the WWE star Dylan "Hornswoggle" Postl. I guess, congrats to Postl? He jumped, crawled and attacked... frightfully well? I was surprised because usually you can tell who the WWE star is in the movie, well not this time. Had it not been for the big push the WWE did with it's promos and a few news articles I caught, I would have never known Postl was in this one until the credits hit. You never see his (unmasked) face. Not that you ever saw Warwick Davis from the original movie without his Leprechaun make-up but his voice is distinct. Here, poor Postl never gets a chance to leave his mark with this one like Davis did. Then again, maybe that's a good thing for Postl and he dodged a bullet. Who knows.

Overall, it's just another run of the mill horror flick with a monster, only this one likes gold. Yeah, if you're a fan of the Leprechaun franchise you'll probably watch it, but I can't say you're missing anything if you pass on it. Where the original was more of a comedy-based horror, this one is darker. It's the same thing that happened with the Evil Dead remake. They took a darker path with a more serious storyline and a touch messier with the attacks. I'm not saying this would have been better if it was a comedy. I'm saying this would have been better if they had put down a stronger script. If you're just looking for quick deaths to fill a late night when you can't sleep then give this one a go... when it's a rental.

Since this is a reboot, I'm sure they're going to try and crank a few more sequels out. As cheesy as the original series was, they gave themselves room to move around and mix it up a bit (even to the point of outer space... man that was a bad idea). Unfortunately, they didn't give themselves much room to move around with this one.  So I'm not seeing anything good coming from the "new" start. 

It's rated R for violence and language.
3 stars

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