Movies From the Black Lagoon

ELVES - 1989, Unrated

By Tom Doty

A department store Santa and a teenage girl are all that can stop the annihilation of the human race in this cheap but ambitious flick that tries to mix 80’s style gore movies with “Gremlins” only to yield mixed results.

The story centers on teenaged Kirsten. She’s a department store waitress who is saving up her tips for a shot at college. She is trying hard but can’t overcome the pressures of her home life which include being raised by a fruitcake grandfather, and her cold as ice mom, while dodging her perverted younger brother.

We open on Kirsten performing a ritual in her back yard with her brainless buddies. The idea is to form a sisterhood that resists the capitalism inherent in Christmas. The group breaks up early ,however, when she accidentally cuts herself on a candle she swiped from her Nazi grandpa(who has a huge collection of occult paraphernalia).Her blood spills onto the ground and summons an elf(a clay like beastie looking more like a gargoyle).

The story also makes room for an alcoholic ex-cop, McGavin, who is struggling with sobriety and anxious to find work. Luckily he gets a job at the same department store as Kirsten. The opening he gets is for a new store Santa. Turns out the old one made a pass at Kirsten and incurred the wrath of the Elf( which proceeded to stab him repeatedly in the crotch).

On the home front Mom decides to deep six Kirsten’s cat ,Agamemnon. We later learn that mom didn’t have a problem with the cat’s fancy name, she just hates Kirsten because Grandpa is the real father. Before you can say Oedipus Rex we find out that gramps was part of a Nazi plot to create a master race of human/Elf hybrids. Apparently the breeding program called for impregnating one’s daughter and handing over the progeny to an Elf for an amorous encounter that will yield a superior race.

If all this wasn’t enough the movie takes a half hour break for a typical stalk and kill plot that is ripped straight form the ‘slasher ” genre. This sequence finds Kirsten and her girl friends meeting their equally stupid dates for a party in the store after hours. The soiree gets several gate crashers when McGavin(whose been evicted from his trailer), the Elf, and three Nazis show up.

Next up we have Kirsten going home to stew about her dead buddies while the Elf-ster and the Nazis track her to the house. Meanwhile McGavin goes off to pester a few professors about the relationship between Nazis and Elves. He then races towards Kirsten’s home just as the Nazis arrive and we are treated to some more poorly staged action sequences and a hideous climax where the Elf finally pitches some woo at Kirsten for one of the creepiest finales in stink cinema.

This is dumb stuff but a lot of fun. The dialogue is just awful as well as most of the amateur acting. The creature effect is okay in some shots and pitiful in others but you just can’t stop watching this train wreck. Partly because of the outrageous plot but there is also the stunt casting of Dan(Grizzly Adams” Haggerty as McGavin. He is pretty dull here and blows away his family friendly image by chain smoking through the whole movie. The movie also turns out to be a liar and only offers one Elf despite the pluralized title.

So bad it’s kind of good. Start the new year off right with this turkey and there is no way you will see a worse movie this year. I guarantee it!

Best Lines: ” I had a rough day at work, Santa got murdered.”

“The man in the study is your grandfather and your father.”

“I impregnated my daughter to create an offspring that would be suitable for an Elf.”

ELVES – 1989, Unrated

By Tom Doty

Tom Doty is a columnist for The Floyd County Times.

Tom Doty is a columnist for The Floyd County Times.

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