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Horrible Films For Horrible People: Elves (1989)

Welcome to Horrible Films for Horrible People, a segment where Wicked Horror’s Zena Dixon revisits terrible, outrageously bad, worthless films so you don’t have to!  This week, we have set our sights on Elves.

Holy Jesus in Heaven…What did I get myself into? I’m not sure where I heard of this film or where it came from. But whatever. Here goes nothing!

Elves starts with a couple of wannabe slutty teenage girls: Kirsten (our lead), Brooke, Amy and her two friends. These girls live in a small town, so I guess they have nothing else to do but go into the middle of the woods in the middle of the night for a seance. Why, you ask? Because everyone loves clandestine, ancient rituals during the holiday season. Duh. Anyway, during their “anti-Christmas” pagan-ridiculousness, Kirsten accidentally slices her hand on some broken glass. As a result, Kirsten and her friends accidentally resurrect some type of creature with a lumpy hand that pops out of the ground. The girls decide to forget about their ritual and return home, but the creature follows. But instead of seeing the elf, we just see a blurry POV shot.

Kirsten has plenty of problems to worry about when she arrives home late! Her squeaky wheel chair bound, ex Nazi grandfather slaps the spit out of her mouth, literally, like twice because she came home late and also because she took his secret, ancient, Nazi, ritual book. Kirsten walks off and subsequently runs into her sadistic, raging Mother who empties Kirsten’s entire savings account because Kirsten attempted secret, ancient Nazi magic and came home late. Moving along, Kirsten’s taking a shower and her perverted, filthy mouthed, boney legged, urine infested tight whitey wearing little brother, Willy, who’s dressed up like Donatello from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, spies on her. After everyone goes to sleep, Willy is attacked by the creature who he describes as a ninja gremlin.

The next morning when Kirsten goes to work at the mall, her mother is far more evil. Kirsten’s Mother attributes Willy’s attack to Kirsten’s cat and puts the poor, defenseless animal in a pillow case and drowns it in a toilet! Kudos for being creative but Jesus! The poor kitty friend didn’t hurt anyone!

Moving on, we meet an ex-detective named Mike who has lost his home and job due to alcoholism. As a result, he takes a job as a mall Santa. His predecessor was stabbed to death by the elf for trying to fondle Kirsten! Who comes up with this stuff?! I’ll stop there to avoid any other spoilers just in case any of you actually feel like punishing yourselves for 90 minutes and watching this atrocity.

To all the struggling filmmakers out there, I feel your pain and this film is evidence that there is hope for you. Clearly! Someone funded this! Not only that, people agreed to be in this film! I was disappointed that the ex-detective turned Santa character Mike was played by Dan Haggerty (Grizzly Adams). I guess things were really tough for him and he needed the check. Not only did he seem out of place in the film, but his character was extremely obnoxious. He was inexplicably piecing together the whole elf thing. How? No clue. He would find innocuous clues and suspect something sinister. Really ridiculous.

Here’s the big, fat whammy. There was only one elf! Just one, so I don’t understand why this film is called Elves when there is only one elf! Perhaps the distributor didn’t think calling the film Elf would be scary enough. Throughout the whole picture, there’s just one unattractive, greasy bald elf running around killing off Kirsten’s friends and trying to have sexual intercourse with her. Another thing that incensed me about the film is that the elf hardly moved! It was almost  comical watching it try to move its arms. I can now understand why the director chose to use blurry POV shots while showing the elf in action.

Overall, I fully recommend against watching this film. If you have a copy of it for some reason, I recommend burning it and burying the remains in an empty lot and never looking back. It is too ridiculous, but if you insist on checking it out, watch it with some friends or at least with someone who’s entertaining; just in case you get the urge to kill yourself – they can talk you out of it.

You’re welcome.

Title: Elves
Director: Jeffrey Mandel
Writer(s):Jeffrey Mandel
Stars: Dan Haggerty, Julie Austin
Year: 1989
Studio/ Production Co: AIP
Language: English
Length: 89 Minutes
Sub-Genre: Holiday horror

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Written by Zena Dixon
In addition to contributing to Wicked Horror, Zena Dixon has been writing about all things creepy and horrific at Real Queen of Horror for over three years. She has also contributed to iHorror and Bloody Disgusting. She has always loved horror films and someday hopes to be known for writing and directing her own feature-length horror pictures.
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