By Jerome Reuter
Synopsis: After moving into an old house, a group inadvertently awakens a leprechaun intent on tracking down his lost bag of gold.
Ah yes, the horror comedy; When you want to be more entertained than grossed out, and laugh at the comical suffering of others. If you’re on the hunt for this prize-winning combination, look no further than Leprechaun, released to theatres in 1993. There’s no delaying the inevitable, this is NOT a good film. It’s bad, campy, and extremely self-aware. However, that’s also part the charm, and why it’s enjoyable to watch. This is definitely in the so-bad-it’s-good category.
Leprechaun also sometimes gets classified as a ‘creature feature.’ Following in the tradition of films such as Ghoulies, Gremlins, Critters, Troll, and even the infamous Troll 2. Those titles are also enormously self aware, and have just amount of depth as this one. There’s a key difference that sets this particular entry apart from those previously mentioned.
To be more specific, the title character portrayed by Warwick Davis. The first words that come to mind with Davis’ performance would be over the top. In this case, those words are quite the understatement. He’s hammy, bombastic, and wildly ostentatious. In all honesty, he holds this film together. This isn’t your typical leprechaun; this is a psychotic pint sized heathen. One you won’t forget after the end credits roll. Weather he’s racing on a tricycle, a wheelchair, or casting off murderous limericks, you can’t help but find yourself rolling with uncontrollable laughter.
He clearly didn’t have to bring his best to the table; luckily for us—he did. Even in a film with a poorly written plot, horrendous dialogue, and lines that include “Fuck you, lucky charms!” Despite a pre-friends era Jennifer Anniston, the rest of the cast is very forgettable; as is the rest of the film. The story’s predictable, and everything is focused on just how bumbling and naïve our protagonists are.
Much like a lot of American horror films from the time period, this one had an enormous run of sequels. Including installments involving space travel, finding unrequited love and travelling into the ghetto. (I’m not making that one up.) Although not one of the more endearing entries into the cannon of the genre, there’s still a good amount of enjoyment.
Pick a four-leaf clover, kiss the blarney stone, and find your own pot of gold with this one. Don’t count on the luck of the Irish to get you through the night.