Episode 40 - Elves (1989)
Here we are friends, another week into our listener request month with a new Holiday classic from our friend Stephen M.
Elves reminds me of the direct-to-video VHS movies I would find in the bargain bin at my local video store when I was in high school. I would take a chance on anything that looked remotely interesting and it led me to some of the most amazing film finds of my adolescence: Ice Cream Man (1995) starring Clint Howard, Blood Diner (episode 10 of this podcast), and Head of the Family (1996) are just a few of the gems I found for under $5 and have lasted a lifetime in my collection.
Elves is a movie that fits in well with those films, only this one is Christmas themed; and it has Nazis.
The plot of Elves is stranger than the movie itself. A group of Nazis has schemed to create the “master race” by selectively breeding an elf monster with a young virgin - and it’s supposed to happen on Christmas eve. It’s not really worth explaining further and I recommend you either listen to the podcast or watch the film yourself to find out where this all leads.
If you do decide to watch the film - which Chris and I both recommend - be aware that on a technical level it is a complete abomination. The production values, the script, the acting, it’s all reminiscent of the worst direct-to-video movies you’ve ever seen. So why would we recommend it? It’s one of those see-it-to-believe-it type of movies - it’s an event not to be missed.
The only reason I can fathom that anyone ever dug this out of the trash heap is that it stars TV’s Dan “Grizzly Adams” Haggerty in a role I bet he wished he never took. I haven’t seen an actor less interested in a script since Rod Steiger in Catch The Heat. I sure hope those checks cashed Dan, we can all feel your pain as you attempt to mumble your way to that new swimming pool.
The screenplay and dialogue is so ludicrous that it will have you laughing out loud in multiple occasions - and not intentionally. The twists and turns are so bizarre and unexpected you will be genuinely shocked at the fact this movie is rated PG-13 and was ever made in the first place.
Despite all these negatives, we are left with a movie that is completely watchable. We’ve reached the eye of the shitstorm, we can see the chaos surrounding us but inside this bubble the weather is fine.
NEXT WEEK'S FILM
Jekyll & Hyde Together Again (1982) Listener Request from Chuck Rodriguez
Director: Jerry Belson
Writers: Monica Mcgowan Johnson (as Monica Johnson), Harvey Miller
Stars: Mark Blankfield, Bess Armstrong, Krista Errickson